Indian Satellite System
Indian satellite missions have a long history from 1975. In
1975 Aryabhatta, first Indian satellite was launched by soviet union. This
satellite was built by ISRO and named after the fifth century astronomer and
mathematician from India. SLV-3 was India’s first experimental satellite launch
vehicle. SLV-3 was successfully launched on July 18, 1980 from Sriharikota Range
(SHAR), when Rohini satellite, RS-1, was placed in orbit, thereby making India
the sixth member of an exclusive club of space-faring nations. The successful
culmination of the SLV-3 project showed the way to advanced launch vehicle
projects such as the Augmented Satellite Launch Vehicle (ASLV), Polar Satellite
Launch Vehicle (PSLV) and the Geosynchronous satellite Launch Vehicle (GSLV).
The PSLV is one of world’s most reliable launch vehicles. It
has been in service for over twenty years and has launched various satellites
for historic missions like Chandrayaan-1, Mars Orbiter Mission, Space Capsule
Recovery Experiment, Indian Regional Navigation Satellite System (IRNSS) etc.
PSLV remains a favourite among various organisations as a launch service
provider and has launched over 40 satellites for 19 countries. In 2008 it
created a record for most number of satellites placed in orbit in one launch by
launching 10 satellites into various Low Earth Orbits. The Geosynchronous
Satellite Launch Vehicle was primarily developed to launch INSAT class of
satellites into Geosynchronous Transfer Orbits. GSLV is being used for launching
GSAT series of satellites. GSLV is a three stage launcher that uses one solid
rocket motor stage, one Earth storable liquid stage and one cryogenic stage. The
most recent flight of GSLV, the GSLV-D5, placed GSAT-14 into its planned orbit
and marked the first successful flight of the indigenous cryogenic stage.
Earlier, GSLV had launched various communication satellites among which EDUSAT
is notable, being India’s first satellite built exclusively to serve the
educational sector through satellite based distance education.
Important Indian satellite’s are mentioned below:
Gsat 16 which is a communication satellite was launched on 6
December 2014 from the Guiana Space Centre, French Guiana, by an Ariane 5
rocket. It is an advanced communication satellite weighing 3150kgs. It replaced
the INSAT-3E. The satellite is equipped with 12 ku, 24 C and 12 Extended C band
transponders.The satellite also has the highest Indian ku-beacon transmitter.
With a life span of 12 years it will form part of GSAT series of Indian
communication satellites. It will support civil aviation, boost public and
private TV and radio services, large-scale internet and telephone operations.
MOM was launched aboard PSLV C-25, which was an XL variant of
the PSLV, one of world’s most reliable launch vehicles. The XL variant was
earlier used to launch Chandrayaan (2008), GSAT-12 (2011) and RISAT-1 (2012).
Marking India’s first venture into the interplanetary space, MOM will explore
and observe Mars surface features, morphology, mineralogy and the Martian
atmosphere. Further, a specific search for methane in the Martian atmosphere
will provide information about the possibility or the past existence of life on
the planet. The enormous distances involved in interplanetary missions present a
demanding challenge; developing and mastering the technologies essential for
these missions will open endless possibilities for space exploration.
Originally known as MetSat-1, the satellite was the first
launched by the PSLV into the Geostationary orbit. On 2003 it was renamed to
Kalpana-1 in memory of Kalpana Chawla—a NASA astronaut who perished in the Space
Shuttle Columbia disaster.
In a step to take the friendship of the SAARC countries to
the next level prime minister Narendra Modi announced the building of SAARC
satellite. It is to be dedicated as a gift to the neighboring countries. This
satellite will help to have a real time scientific data. The main objective
being it enables a full range of services to all our neighbors in the areas of
telecommunications and broadcasting applications like television, DTH, tele-education
and disaster management. It is likely to be launched by ISRO in December 2016.