The Indian Space Research Organisation recently went through a tough phase as one of their newest satellites, the GSAT-6A failed to establish links with its handlers on earth. Though the launch was successful, the failure of the satellite brought long faces. But ISRO finally has something to rejoice. Their eighth navigation satellite INRSS-1I was launched in the wee hours of the morning from Sriharikota.
The launch of the satellite was done by PSLV-C41 in four stages and it took a total of just 19 minutes to get the satellite to space.
The new satellite, INRSS-1I was launched to replace the country’s first navigation satellite, hailed as the IRNSS-1A. The older satellite had its Rubidium atomic clocks malfunctioning two years ago. This made it hard to measure the precise location data from the satellite. Thus there was a need to replace the satellite.
The new IRNS-1I weighs 1,425 kg and has a lifespan of 10 years. It is the eighth satellite to join the group of navigation satellites known as NavIC (Navigation with Indian Constellation). This is also known as the ‘desi GPS.’
In a press briefing, Dr K Sivan, ISRO chairman, congratulated the scientists. "PSLV-C41 precisely injected the eighth navigation satellite of India of the NavIC constellation into the targeted orbit. This is the second successful launch we achieved in just 14 days after the successful GSLV launch (on March 29),” he said.
For years, India had dependent on GPS, which is a feature that was started by the US in 1973. Since the US denied India the use of the service during the Kargil war, India felt the need to develop its own systems. NavIC helped India enter a navigation satellite group where only a few countries rule. The US has GPS, Russia has GLONASS and the European Union has Galileo.