Navy gets a boost with Launch of First Dedicated Defence Satellite

India's First Dedicated Satellite for Armed Forces Launched
The Launch set to Increase Navy's Operational Effectiveness

The Indian Armed Forces in general and Indian Navy in particular got another shot in the arm on 29 Sep 13 when India's first dedicated defence satellite GSAT-7 was launched by the Ariane-5 launch vehicle of Arianespace, French Guiana.

The Ariane-5 rocket took off from Kourou at 2am IST and precisely placed GSAT-7 into the intended Geosynchronous Transfer Orbit (GTO) after a flight of 34 minutes 25 seconds duration. As planned, Isro's Master Control Facility (MCF) at Hassan in Karnataka started getting the signals five minutes prior to the separation of GSAT-7 from Ariane-5.The solar panels of the satellite have been deployed and they are generating power. Initial checks have indicated normal health of the satellite. The present orbit of the satellite will be raised to Geostationary Orbit of about 36,000km altitude through three orbit raising manoeuvres by the firing of GSAT-7's Liquid Apogee Motor (LAM). 

The multi-band communication satellite named "Rukmini" will help Navy keep an eye on the Indian Ocean region (IOR) spread across 2,000 nautical miles of an area. It would proovide real-time inputs to Indian Navy Ships, Submarines and Aircraft. Additionally, The Indian Army, too, will get vital inputs about over-the-land movements.

The satellite is essentially a geo-stationary communication satellite possessing real-time input capability to the units at sea and on shore. With the help of the shore based Operational centres, Rukmini, weighing 2,625kgs will also help the Navy to keep an eye over both Arabian Sea and Bay of Bengal. It will also cover an area spread from Persian Gulf to Malacca Strait and will thus cover an area equivalent to almost 70% of the IOR. 

The "over-the-sea use" Rukmini, with UHF, S, Ku and C-band transponders, is to be followed by GSAT-7A with the IAF and Army sharing its "over-the-land use" bandwidth. 

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