[Space-Tech] P1/3: (IRNSS) Indian Regional Navigation Satellite System- Desi GPS for Drunk drivers

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Unacademy Plus Mrunal Economy for Prelims and Mains UPSC!
  1. What is IRNSS?
  2. 7 Satellites of IRNSS
  3. IRNSS-C launch
  4. Benefits of IRNSS Desi-GPS system?
  5. Why waste money building Desi GPS?
  6. GAGAN
  7. Appendix1: IRNSS-Scientific principle
  8. Appendix 2: Russian GLONASS

What is IRNSS?

  • Indian Regional Navigation Satellite System (IRNSS).
  • 2006: Government approved project with ~Rs.1500 crores.
  • American Global positioning system has 24 orbiting satellites, a global network of ground stations. Thus GPS covers every part of the world.
  • But, given this small budget, it is beyond ISRO’s aukaat to maintain 24 satellites to cover entire globe,
  • Therefore, our Desi GPS will use just seven satellites, and try to cover India + 1,500 km beyond its borders.
  • HQ: ISRO Navigation Centre at Byalalu, near Bangalore. It’ll control this system.

IRNSS Indian regional navigation satellite system

7 Satellites of IRNSS
3 satellites
  • These three of the satellites will be placed over the equator, in the geostationary orbit.
  • they match the Earth’s rotation and therefore appear from the ground to remain at a fixed position in the sky.
+4 satellites
  • will be in pairs in two inclined geosynchronous orbits.
  • From the ground, these satellites will appear to travel in figures of ‘8’ during the course of a day.
  • All seven IRNSS satellites will be at a height of about 36,000 km, taking a whole day to circle the Earth.
  • In future, we can add more satellites to increase coverage surrounding India. and with God willing, one day 25-30 satellites to cover entire earth, just like American-GPS.

So far 3 out 7 satellites launched

When Jul. 2013 April 2014 Oct. 2014
Where Satish Dawan Space Centre in Sriharikota, Andhra
Using PSLV* C22 C24 C26

*PSLV: Polar Satellite Launch vehicle.

IRNSS-C launch

(Mains-GS3) Q.Write a shortnote on the importance of IRNSS-C satellite launch  100 words.

WHEN? October 2014. Hence the need for publishing this stupid article.
WHERE? Satish Dawan Space Centre in Sriharikota.
HOW? using Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (PSLV C26)
  • Carried two payloads
  • A: Device to send navigation signal to users
  • B: C-band transponders to help in laser ranging. (to help Military / artillery range estimation)

In next two years, remaining satellites will be launch, and Desi-GPS system will become operational.

Benefits of IRNSS Desi-GPS system?

(Mains-GS3) Discuss the benefits of IRNSS system 200 words.

Two services IRNSS will offer two services:

  • Standard Positioning Service: that will be accessible to anyone
  • Restricted Service: Will be available only to the military and other government-authorized users.
Accuracy American GPS: 15 metersOur IRNSS: 20 meters.
  • The standard GPS receiver (in your smartphones and tablets) will not work with IRNSS.
  • You’ll need a special receiver equipment to use navigation data from
  • Will serve both civil and military users.
  • Will provide time-location coordinates on land, sea and air.
  • Cell phone apps- for mapping, driving, hiking in jungle and remote areas. And if you use it with Idea-internet then rickshaw-walla can’t make you ‘ullu’.
  • Forest department: Putting out wildfire, tracking endangered animals.
  • Fleet Management e.g. taxi or truck company can monitor whether their driver is on right path or not.
  • Disaster Management.
  • During war: naval fleet Management, missile navigation etc.

Why waste money building Desi GPS?

Interview question: Why should Indian Government waste money on IRNSS? Why not simply use American GPS at a fraction of that cost?

IRNSS vs American GPS

At present only three countries have fully functional global navigation systems. (EU’s Galileo system yet to become fully operational)

Russia GLONASS (more under appendix)
China Beidou
  • To deploy a global navigation system, you need to setup lots of satellites hovering around the world, so they can scan and sent pinpoint location of anywhere to anywhere.
  • During the Iraq war, the Americans sent wrong GPS signals to the Iraqi jets and missiles, therefore Iraqis could not attack Americans forces in a precise manner.
  • Moral of the story = Don’t rely on other people’s navigation system.
  • For the short term, We (India) have designed our missiles and fighter jets to can use both GPS (American) and GLONASS (Russian) signals for navigation.
    • So if we want to attack America or its ally Pakistan, we can rely on GLONASS
    • And if we want to attack Russia or its ally China, we can rely on American GPS.
  • But for long term, we will need our own Desi-GPS system.
  • Same reason why we need Anti-satellite missiles, to shoot down videsi-GPS systems during war.


(Mains-GS3) Write a short note on GAGAN system. 100 words

  • ‘Global Positioning System Aided Geo Augmented Navigation System (GAGAN) for civil aviation purposes.
  • GPS aided geo augmented navigation’ (gagan)
  • It is a joint effort by the ISRO and the Airports Authority Of India (AAI).
  • It’s main use is to help Air traffic control and helps pilots fly / land aircrafts in bad weather.
  • But as the name suggests “GPS aided …” meaning it is not a separate independent navigation system.
  • It depends on GPS (American navigation system). Therefore we need IRNSS for long term solution.

Appendix1: IRNSS-Scientific principle

Since IRNSS project will still take two years to complete= Topic remains important for scientific principle MCQs in CSAT prelim 2015, 2016 and even 2017 (because even in 2017, Hindu will keep doing “mahimaa-gaan” every once in a while). So, let’s finish the scientific principle once and for all.

Microwaves: how they help in GPSing?

  • IRNSS satellites use two microwave frequency bands: L5 and S.
  • These microwaves travel at speed of light.
  • Your receiver (the GPS-like gadget) will calculate the delay between microwave’s transmission and its reception = thus you get coordinates on earth.

Atomic Clocks

  • For above microwave-calculation, Navigation satellites have to periodically transmit their precise position in orbit with exact time.
  • For this, we can’t fit Timex or Sonata watches in the satellite. They need to carry extremely accurate clocks with long shelf-life.
  • Therefore, Each IRNSS satellite is equipped with rubidium atomic clocks, to keep precise time.

Appendix2: Russian GLONASS

This is an old topic from 2012. Dead horse resurrects because of IRSNSS.

MCQs relevance: similarities and differences between American GPS, GLONASS and IRNSS.

  • Glonass is Russia’s Global Navigation Satellite System.
  • It provides location and time information anywhere in the planet.
  • Glonass is an alternative to the U.S.-controlled Global Positioning System (GPS).
  • 2012: Mohan-Putin signed agreement for use of GLONASS.
  • GLONASS navigation system will allow Indian missiles, to strike within half a metre of distant targets= very accurate.
  • GLONASS is fitted on Nuclear submarine Chakra= killer combo.
Civilian use
  • iPhone 4S mobile supports both GPS and GLONASS.
  • You can use it to know distance covered during jogging etc.
  • Finding shortest possible route during travel
Commercial use
  • Keep track of your school-buses, transport trucks etc.
Indian History Freedom Struggle Pratik Nayak

77 Comments on “[Space-Tech] P1/3: (IRNSS) Indian Regional Navigation Satellite System- Desi GPS for Drunk drivers”

  1. Hey everyone, Review Laxmikanth ‘Governance in India’ : Why should I buy it ? ; Why should I not ? Does it sincerely cover GSP-2 syllabus,which apart from Laxmik polity is to be read (I agree with the fact that it is impossible for any author to cover entire syllabus) .I have greatest regard for author laxmikanth (From quality to hardwork to showmanship).
    I request only those people to reply who purchased this book and are aware of each and every topic of gsp2 mains syllabus.

    1. Go for it bro…
      Its good…
      Though what u would get per page reading is not as much which u would get from polity one but it is a good book…
      But go for second edition not first one…

  2. Sir i think EU also hav Galelieo navigation system.

  3. SSC CGL MORNING SHIFT 066pk7 was my test form no…. zero CURRENT AFFFAIRS…….and GK/GA was full of STATIC PORTION consisting mainly economy/marketing Science = physics and mostly biology (major portion) and Ancient history was there…….none from freedom struggle…….

  4. reasoning was very easy……. english also was moderate…. this tyme comprehension were bit tricky.. i mean dhyaan se padne per answers kiye jaa sakte the.. if i compare it to 27th april wala exam……… and maths was tricky… time consuming question were there

    SSC had major focus on TRIGONOMTERY…… Geometry…… and Pipes cistern…..

    1. Ashish can you please upload SSC Question here so that it would be helpful for us ..or simply share some questions from General knowledge and math

  5. Thanx a lot sir for resuming science and technology series.

  6. Sir, I am following you since some three months and found very good articles.As i live in remote area and working also,so your article really help us.I am facing some problem….1) how to remember every thing, i don’t have full day as i am working? 2) Is daily reading of hindu must because you almost write and explain things nice?? 3) Would you tell something for exam like BPSC which is upcoming?

  7. Mrunal , You do it the “MRUNAL” way ! Loved the compilation , it even includes data and resoning from the hindu editorial. How much did you take to write this article . I seriously want to know. Because if I do it , it will take around 1 hour , still the outcome may not be this good.

  8. This is only for updation for fellow aspirnats….,Mrunal you and your team is a symbol of start of Art…..
    Europe is also planning its Own navigation system called Galileo………

  9. Mrunal I tried to print it but the 1st big image came as blank when I converted this HTML into PDF using print option. The image has good data and I wouldn’t like to loose it. Please look into the matter. It has happened to me before also in quite a no . of files.

  10. When i print it i get a blank image

  11. Sir,

    What about Europe’s Galileo? Is it not yet operational?

    1. Galileo Navigation system will have 30 total satellites and only 4 of them have been successfully deployed yet. In August 2014, the EU tried launching Galileo’s Full Operational Capability satellites, but apparently these satellites were not placed in their proper orbital positions. The European Space Agency is now investigating the failure. So, at this point, I guess we can safely assume that there is a long time before we see Galileo as an operational navigation system.

      You can track their progress at this link: http://ec.europa.eu/enterprise/policies/satnav/galileo/index_en.htm

    2. It is under construction (like IRNSS) :)
      Full completion of the 30-satellite Galileo system is expected by 2019

  12. mrunal,
    as upsc has mentioned that they will disclose prelims marks after entire process is over…no rti will be entertain…but after one year when we ask them for the copy of answer sheet,they will refuse with an excuse that it has been destroyed as per policy..but what if we file an rti now…..asking them to disclose marks and if not possible then atleast to keep the answer sheet intact and provide copy of it after process is over….does it make sense as i really want to see my sheet??

  13. sorry for out of context message but i believe this website is a good platform to interact with upsc aspirants . message is I want to sell my vision ias test series comprising 25 gs tests and 5 essay tests with all the video analysis at very affordable rates. I am selling it coz i could not make it to mains this time. anyone interested can contact me on rbmiet88@gmail.com for more details.

  14. Can somebody post scanned copy of ssc cgl that took place on 19 oct 2014..I searched it on google and couldnt find it at all.

  15. i am from obc category while filling daf for mains, what document needed for obc certification..is there any need of father’s asset proof or land possession [proof .please anyone ,,or mrunal sir please tell me about this..

  16. nice article sir, it is important for main exam. sir tell me what is difference between geostationary and geosynchronus ?

    1. Copy paste

      geostationary orbit is a type of geosynchronous orbit. A geosynchronous orbit can be any orbit, like with an elliptical path, that has a period equal to the Earth’s rotational period, whereas a geostationary orbit has to be a circular orbit and that too placed above the equator. However, in case of a satellite, the choice of a particular orbit depends upon its mission. There can be many geosynchronous orbits but only one geostationary orbit with respect to Earth as the central body.

  17. Mrunal Sir,

    I have paper of SSC CGl held on 19/10/2014 and wants to share with all. But along this message pdf or jpg can’t be attached.

    1. Add that papers in google drive and share its link here.

  18. anybody here want to share/make platform..for preparing for MPSC (Maharashtra Public Service Commission). Rajya Seva exam..Pre is expected in Feb 2015 with very decent posts..we plan to prepare Mains first and then shift to Pre..I have written Rajya seva mains 2013 and 2014 twice..currently preparing in Pune…if mutually interested..may contact-sohamse@gmail.com

  19. Sir,

    I usually print your articles and then study them. But today when i tried to print this article, the format in which i got the print was totally different from the format available on website. Please look into the isuue.



  20. anybody want to buy vision ias gs and essay test series at nominal rates . kindly contact on rbmiet88@gmail.com for more details

  21. Nice helpful article ….

  22. Hi Friends…
    I need to knw the benefits and shortcomings of Eurozone…!
    Can anybody help…!

    1. Pros
      1. Easier internal travel within eurozone ( tourism, service personnel, goods)
      2. Lower interest rates
      3. Central monetary policy, loser countries who found it difficult to control inflation get it done via ECB
      4. Euro becomes a reserve currency, value of euro increases
      5. Economic intergration leading towards political integration, WWII like situation will harm all the members so cannot fight
      6. Bail out during crisis

      1. Loss of sovereignty ( But that is the basic concept of a grand union)
      2. Nations who undervalue there currecny and are net exporters ( like japan) will be hurt due to dearer currency
      3. Cost of introduction of Euro
      4. Swim and Sink together
      5. No free meals, bail out comes at Austerity cut price (PIGS)

      Ekta mein shakti hai! So many tiny countries VS USA/CHINA/INDIA=Wipeout

      Q) Why did Britain keep out of Euro zone

      1. (Maybe) Britain kept out due to its higher economic power and entry in euro system will hurt its economy somehow…. Plz elaborate further

        1. Simple answer is “Pride”, although all research proves that Britain’s entry will benefit everyone. There is resistance within people to accept Euro. Around 75% of population does not wants to enter into Euro Zone, so a government elected by a popular mandate cannot move such a resolution. Analysts will give you reasons why Britain should keep out, but all facts point otherwise. When Britain keeps out, entire U.K keeps out

          E.Z has started to ignore trade within U.K as it finds it easier to trade with Euro (same) currency, If Britain joins, Germany will no longer be as great a power as it is today, financial capital will be shifted from Frankfurt to London. But PRIDE.

          1. What rubbish..they are talking about moving out of European Union and u r batting for them joining euro…there’s no research to prove that it would be beneficial…cite your extensive research papers…2yrs back euro zone itself was on the verge of collapse

          2. 1. https://www.google.co.in/url?sa=t&rct=j&q=&esrc=s&source=web&cd=2&cad=rja&uact=8&ved=0CCgQFjAB&url=http%3A%2F%2Fhome.aubg.bg%2Ffaculty%2FDidar%2FEUR324%2FStudent%2520Work%2FWhy%2520does%2520UK%2520stay%2520out%2520of%2520the%2520Euro-zone.ppt&ei=rTpHVIalOYqVuASn9YGgDA&usg=AFQjCNEuleFPQyPiK_g83-bTi8LRpH2kxg&sig2=5SfF8-qmfYY4o5pd5yfHyA&bvm=bv.77880786,d.c2E

            2. Ask your self which country left the E.U or E.Z in recent history

            3. Ask your self how many countries have joined E.U/E.Z and how many are further about to join.

            4.My research? No, I did not conduct any research. I’m not an euro expert, I study i for General study. I am not ECB.

            5. “They are talking about moving out ” : Which country has moved out? Talking is not doing. Rather entire Baltic has joined.

            6. This might turn into a counter productive comment war, so I will refrain after this comment. Rest you can conduct a search on your own. If you have some other value added material then do add, not as a personal thing, just for benefit of all aspirants.

      2. @Jude_Prudence Thankuuu :)
        I have a question… Eurozone is abot currency integration too..in this case foreign exchange ratio is same for every member..This means its thwarting the competition in the market…So y wud ny country join it? it wil mar their export and import business,,,! !!

        Cons points:
        6.cheap labour migration…leading to loss of job of local people.
        7.Congestion of faster growing cities…afects lifestyle and other related prblms.
        8.attacks on migrant population

        Correct me , if m wrng smwhr…
        Also cud u provide ny article on EU and Eurozone…
        Ur efforts r highly appreciated..!!Thanks a tonne :)

        1. The cons are correct, but they are more relevant in case of globalization & European Union, although they may be used for currency also.

          Why would anybody join?

          Because transaction costs decrease & internal trade within the union increases, removing dependence on other countries. Further, think, will anyone want to buy currency of Bangladesh,Myanmar or Peso or would you rather buy dollar?!

          Similarly, these chotu countries of E.Z the Balkans, the Baltics, so many of them turns away the investor cuz high speculation with low exit/atternative options. It’s safer to invest in Euro as it’s more liquid. In this way the unstable scary(pun intended) communist leaning Balkans got investments. On the other hand, the powers have there own motives.
          Frankfurt because financial capital+Maastricht treaty gave credibility to Germany which just had it’s wall fallen!

          France is still out of E.Z, & British have splendid isolation.

          So chillar party ka benefit
          Big guns in there own world. Germany became the leader of developing.

          1. thanku Jude_Prude_Dude :) :D

  23. How to manage time for a bank employee for preparing for civils

  24. Psst…Don’t tell anyone

    IRNSS covers 1500km more around India (neighbors)
    Nirbhay is a nuke capable cruse missile controlled by Satellite navigation ;-)
    Tactical nuke, the new thing ( like ion cannon of Command & Conquer)
    At some places ISRO acidently said “IRNSS encrypted band is more accurate than GPS”
    We can keep on adding satellites to IRNSS, secretly or boastfully and cover more & more area
    And since I’m in Mood today…The satellite navigation clocks suffer from time Dilation (Has time travelling already occurred ?!)

    1. I had heard that the issue of time dilation is with gps also (and possibly with all such other systems) thats why they used atomic clocks and a permanent station to keep track of this time dilation issue and in case of Gps this task is performed by Us airforce….. Btw I don’t understand this time dilation issue very much

  25. As far as time traveling is concerned it is happening with everything and everyone but on such a miniscule scale that it is not a big concern but when it comes to satellites the affect its far greater than on us (ofcourse based on their speed and mass related to us). This very small chage in time could have great effect on navigation calculations (thats y atomic clocks, though they can’t remove time lag but can reduce the variance) and to make the correct those centers are established. Better reffer to Wikipedia and hope u know its out of syllabus.

  26. Time dilation depends upon observation, no matter how perfect your watch is, time dilation will occur. it depends upon relativity.
    Speed of light is constant. So velocity if constant, but if two people observe same phenomenon for different time periods, then time must move differently for them.

    in satellites, dilation always occurs, no matter what you use, cause it depends upon distance under observation, not time itself. GPS is corrected every single day according to clocks on earth.

    As far as syllabus is concerned, yes, UPSC might never ask this… but i simply study it cause I like science.

    Things to think of.

    Is microwave moves at speed of light, then what about other waves of electromagnetic spectrum? Can radio wave move at speed of light? If yes, then what is the factor that creates difference in waves? If it is the frequency, then can blue shift or red shift result in radio wave becoming X ray (theoretically)

  27. These are not the things to be thought of by a upsc aspirant. Rather if he is interested he should look them up in a book. If they are there fine, if they not there he should leave it.

    1. 53. Which of the following is/are cited by the scientists as evidence/ evidences for the ‘continued expansion of universe?
      1. Detection of microwaves in space
      2. Observation of redshift phenomenon in space
      3. Movement of asteroids in space
      4. Occurrence of supernova explosions in space Select the correct answer using the codes given below :

      [A]1 and 2 [B]2 Only [C]1,3 & 4 [D]None

      CSP 2012

      UPSC has asked questions from electromagnetic spectrum many a times directly (arrange frequency) or indirectly. And perhaps this may have been a little advanced for “General” studies but complete knowledge is always better than half baked knowledge, so study of Red shift & blue shift lead to this.

      1. Sir/Madam,
        I appreciate your thorough knowledge both in science and humanities. No doubts about that.
        You were very correct in suggesting that we must know that the speed of all e.m radiations is the same.
        However, in my opinion the question of radio waves becoming x-rays is not the type of question the upsc might ever ask, and my reason for believing so is that it is more of intellectual indulgence than general inquisitiveness to ask such a question.
        But anyway I appreciate the breadth of your knowledge.

        1. Such respect! I’m pleased yet shocked. Thank You, but “Itna Phook pe mat chadao”, I am just some random aspirant like any of the thousands of aspirant. You are also correct, UPSC may never ask and i simply study it for the love of cosmology. Over these years I have just learnt one thing, to keep on going one must fall in love with what s/he does. Some places where she has solid base, other above average and some “Kaam Chalau”.

          Now no more wasting of precious space in “boolbachhans” comment section must be used for value addition to the articles.

          Best of luck.

          @mrunal #Bhai ( hum bhi rang mein dhal gaye)
          Kindly update the super series of last year (Eco, Geo, Land, Food wali) just one article each to cover new developments & new threats. Uss se yaad aaya, Rinderpest and smaalbox have been eliminated completely…came in handy in the Pre 2014.

          I.R is also lagging. TIPP, ISIS & India, Ukraine & india, Baba Balooch & India, nepal and India, Israel and India, XYZ and India, oh… South America and india, last year paper 3 was full of India in I.R section!

  28. Mrunal sir/frds,
    I want to take loan for IAS coaching so any one know is there any scheme for tht means provide at less interest rate or any other? If have any idea then pls suggest me.

  29. @mrunal doesnt india had russian system when america refused at the time of war?

  30. Sir, I’m confused about the optional in civils whether to take PUB AD or GEOGRAPHY Most of the students prefer PUB AD why?

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