ISRO set to launch navigation satellite today

ISRO will launch navigation satellite ‘IRNSS-1H’ from Sriharikota today.

The Indian Regional Navigation Satellite System (IRNSS) is an independent regional system developed by India on par with the US-based GPS, Glonass of Russia, and Galileo developed by Europe.

The 29-hour countdown began yesterday at 2pm and scientists are currently involved in filling up the propellants, they said, adding that the countdown is progressing well.

The satellite weighs around 1,425 kg and will replace IRNSS-1A as its atomic clocks have failed. These atomic clocks are crucial to provide positional information to users on earth.

The launch will take place from the second launch pad of Satish Dhawan Space Centre at Sriharikota at 7 pm on Thursday.

The launch vehicle PSLV-C39 will use the ‘XL’ variant, of PSLV equipped with six strap-ons, each carrying 12 tons of propellant.

The spacecraft was built and tested by ISRO along with a consortium of six small and medium industries.

The system that offer services like terrestrial and marine navigation, disaster management, vehicle tracking and fleet management, navigation aide for hikers and travellers, visual and voice navigation for drivers, was named ‘NavIC’ (Navigation with Indian Constellation) by Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

ISRO had launched seven satellites – IRNSS-1G on April 28, 2016, IRNSS-1F (March 10, 2016), IRNSS-1E (January 20, 2016), IRNSS-1D (March 28, 2015), IRNSS-1C (October 16, 2014), IRNSS-1B (April 4, 2014) and IRNSS-1A on July 1, 2013.

According to ISRO officials, the total cost of all the seven satellites was Rs 1,420 crore.


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