New Delhi, India: India’s advanced communication satellite GSAT-8 successfully launched into its geosynchronous transfer orbit by Arianespace’s launch vehicle Ariane-5 from Kourou in French Guyana. Weighing about 3100 Kg, GSAT-8 is configured to carry 24 high-power transponders and a two channel GPS-aided GEO Augmented Navigation (GAGAN) payload.
Once it was introduced into its intended orbit, ISRO’s master control facility in Karnataka’s Hassan took control of the satellite and placed it into the geostationary orbit. The satellite will be positioned at 55 degree E longitude and co-located with INSAT 3E satellite. Its designed in-orbit mission life is more than 12 years.
The Ku-band (11-14 Gigahertz) transponders of the satellite will augment the capacity of the INSAT system. While, GAGAN will improve the accuracy of positioning information received from GPS satellite through an improved network of ground-based receivers that will be made available to users in India through geostationary satellites.
Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO) spokesperson S Satish explained, “GSAT-8 is essentially meant for DTH (direct to home) television services, but none of the available bandwidth will be leased out to private operators.”
ISRO spent INR 300 crore for the launch, and the project’s cost is about INR 600 crore.