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IRNSS-1I to enrich navigation fleet (Relevant for GS Prelims, GS Mains Paper III)

Navigation satellite IRNSS-1I was flown into space from Satish Dhawan Space Centre Sriharikota space pad. The 1,425-kg satellite will shortly become the eighth satellite to join the NavIC constellation of Indian regional navigation satellites. IRNSS-1I is expected to serve for 10 years. It was put to orbit on the PSLV-C41 rocket. 

What is NavIC?

NavIC (Navigation with Indian Constellation), dubbed India’s own GPS, has been designed to provide precise information on position, navigation and time related to objects or people.

The eight satellites have a civilian and restricted military/security application to aid security and disaster management and fleet monitoring on land, air and sea.

What was the need for IRNSS- 1I?

ISRO launched the first seven navigation satellites — IRNSS-1A to 1G — between July 2013 and April 2016. Although 1I is the ninth to be built and launched for the NavIC fleet, the previous satellite, 1H, was lost in a faulty launch last August.

1I and 1H were planned as backups but became necessary after all three imported rubidium atomic clocks on 1A failed in orbit. All seven satellites are required for accurate, 24-hour information from the fleet. Both 1I and 1H were fitted with corrected atomic clocks.

(Adapted from The Hindu)

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