The Indian Space Research Organisation (Isro) will launch a second navigational satellite — the IRNSS-1B — from Sriharikota on April 4. The countdown for the launch began on Wednesday.
The 1,432 kg satellite will be carried by Indian rocket Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (PSLV C24). IRNSS-1B is the second navigation satellite of the seven satellites constituting the IRNSS space segment.
Its predecessor IRNSS-1A was launched in July 2013.
"This is the second step towards building India's own navigation system. Satellite navigation is a domain which is constantly evolving. Our Indian Regional Navigation Satellite System will be a regional system, dedicated for usage in Indian main land and 1500km around." Isro chairman Dr K Radhakrishnan said.
Initially it would be a constellation of seven satellites at an altitude of 36,000 km, distributed in geostationary and inclined orbits. The accuracy is expected to be 10-20 meters depending on the application." We should launch two more IRNSS satellites in 2014. We target to complete the constellation of 7 satellites by 2015-16 itself."
IRNSS-1B carries two types of payloads — navigation payload and ranging payload. The IRNSS system will provide two types of services — Standard Positioning System provided to all the users and the Restricted Service provided only to authorised users.
The navigational system, developed by India, is designed to provide accurate position information service to users within the country and up to 1,500 km from the nation's boundary line. Besides applications in surveying, mapping, archaeology, satellite navigation has also proved useful in the fields of maritime, aviation, automobiles, disaster management operations and tracking services.