Insat-3A, India's multipurpose satellite has been moved closer to its space home after its second orbit raising exercise was successfully conducted on Saturday.
The master control facility (MCF) at Hassan, 250 km from Bangalore, fired the liquid apogee motor on board the satellite for
the second consecutive day to raise its perigee, its closest point to the earth, to 32,050 km from 11,500 km.
This places the satellite just 4,000 km from its designated slot at 36,000 km from the earth.
The Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) announced the equatorial plane has been reduced from 0.9 degrees to 0.1 degrees. The satellite is now completing an earth orbit in 22 hours 40 minutes.
"All systems on board the satellite are functioning normally," ISRO said in a statement.
The satellite was launched April 10 from Kourou in French Guyana on an Ariane-5 rocket after an unexpected delay of 24 hours because of less than nominal signal emanating from the telemetry transmitters.
Since then the satellite has been responding to commands from the MCF, which gained control of the satellite within 30 minutes of its launch.
The third round of orbit raising would take place on April 14. The firing of the apogee motors would help push the satellite to its geo-stationary space home for the next 12 years at 93.5 degree east longitude.
The satellite would provide telecommunications, television broadcasting, meteorological and search and rescue services. It carries 24 four transponders - 12 operating in the normal C-band frequency, six in extended C-band and six in the Ku-band.
Insat-3A also carries another transponder for satellite aided search and rescue (SAS&R) as part of India's contribution to the international programme of the same name.
Insat-3A is the third in the Insat-3 series after Insat-3B and Insat-3C that were launched in March 2000 and January 2002 respectively.