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India Launches a New Navigational Satellite

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The Indian Space Research Organization successfully launched the second of seven satellites for their new navigational system. IRNSS-1B is part of a planned constellation to provide domestic positional information for India and the surrounding region.

The Indian Regional Navigation Satellite System (IRNSS) will be a constellation of seven satellites designed to give India an independent position information service. All seven satellites will be in geostationary and geosynchronous orbits designed to provide continuous coverage within India and the surrounding 1,500 kilometers outside the country. This satellite constellation will give India a domestic navigational network, instead of instead of relying upon foreign programs like GPS and Glonass.


Satellite IRNSS-1B was mounted onto India's Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (PSLV-C24), a four-stage rocket. The same rocket was previously used to launch the Mars Orbiter Spacecraft. After the 1,432 kg satellite was injected into orbit, it automatically deployed solar panels, and will be manoeuvred into its final orbit in the next few days.


Photography credit: Indian Space Research Organization. Read more about the launch on the ISRO press release, or on SpaceFlight101. Want more launch photos? Soyuz just carried Expedition 39 to the International Space Station.