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The Indian GPS

The Indian GPS
Highlights

India yet again joined the elite space club by successfully putting into the orbit the seventh and final navigation satellite - IRNSS-1G. The scintillating Indian space odyssey reached yet another milestone.

India yet again joined the elite space club by successfully putting into the orbit the seventh and final navigation satellite - IRNSS-1G. The scintillating Indian space odyssey reached yet another milestone.

The country began its satellite programme with the launching of multipurpose satellites, and attained mastery by launching an array of satellites that included remote sensing, meteorological, educational satellites etc. And now, the Indian GPS!

The Indian Regional Navigation Satellite System (IRNSS) is similar to the GPS (Global Positioning System) of the US, Glonass of Russia and Galileo of Europe as well as China's Beidou. The Indian navigational satellite system has mind-boggling purposes that include both civilian and defense needs.

The applications of IRNSS are: terrestrial, aerial and marine navigation, vehicle tracking and fleet management, terrestrial navigation for hikers and travellers, disaster management, integration with mobile phones, mapping and geodetic data capture and visual and voice navigation for drivers.

The indigenous navigational satellite system will be of great use during strategic situations. An Indian-owned satellite navigation system is crucial to get positional accuracy during war or a war-like situation as the country may be denied such information by nations owing similar systems during such times.

True to the glorious legacy of our space research and applications, the NavIC (Navigation Indian Constellation) would help in improving the lives of the common man.

IRNSS is an independent regional navigation satellite system designed to provide position information in the Indian region and 1,500 km around the Indian mainland. IRNSS provides two types of services, namely, Standard Positioning Services (SPS) – provided to all users – and Restricted Services (RS) – provided to authorised users.

The seven first-generation satellites have been launched over a three-year period, starting with the deployment of IRNSS-1A in July 2013.

With the completion of this constellation of satellites, India is now free from dependence on foreign governments and foreign suppliers. India, instead of using a larger GSLV or going for a foreign launch, pressed into service time-tested PSLV. This itself is a technological accomplishment.

India began its journey into the satellite era over four decades ago with the launch of an experimental satellite. The 1980’s saw India’s success with multipurpose satellites.

The indigenous Indian Space programme took a qualitative turn with the launch of exclusive purpose satellites like meteorological and educational satellites. The Indian remote sensing satellites have a global appreciation.

India is already using satellite technology in disaster management, telecommunications, delivery of education and health services to the remote areas, natural resources management, weather mapping, sustainable development, environmental planning, agriculture etc.

Now, navigation also joins this long and fascinating list. Indian satellite programme is not only indigenous but internationally acclaimed. India has acquired versatile experience in a range of space applications indicating the maturity of its space programme.

The cost effectiveness of Indian space programme is yet another noteworthy feature. The Indian space scientists have made the nation proud by accomplishing something even many developed nations could not. The nation salutes them once again.

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