Why in the news?

Recently, The Vice President, Shri M Venkaiah Naidu today suggested to ISRO to give a thrust to the indigenously-developed regional navigation satellite system, (NaVIC) for global use.

  • The IRNSS constellation was named as “NavIC” (Navigation with Indian Constellation) by the Honourable Prime Minister, Mr. Narendra Modi and dedicated to the nation on the occasion of the successful launch of the IRNSS-1G satellite

Indian Regional Navigation Satellite System (IRNSS) : NavIC

  • The Indian government approved the project in May 2006, with the intention of the system to be completed and implemented by 2015.
  • IRNSS is an independent regional navigation satellite system being developed by India. 
  • The main objective is to provide Reliable Position, Navigation and Timing services over India and its neighbourhood, to provide fairly good accuracy to the user.

What areas does it cover?

  • Primary Service Area: To provide accurate position information service to users in India as well as the region extending up to 1500 km from its boundary, which is its primary service area.
  • Extended Service Area: It lies between primary service area and area enclosed by the rectangle from Latitude 30 deg South to 50 deg North, Longitude 30 deg East to 130 deg East.

The IRNSS will provide basically two types of services:

  1. Standard Positioning Service (SPS)
  2. Restricted Service (RS)
  • Both services will be carried on L5 (1176.45 MHz) and S band (2492.028 MHz). The navigation signals would be transmitted in the S-band frequency and broadcast through a phased array antenna to keep required coverage and signal strength.
  • IRNSS gives real time information for 2 services i.e standard positioning service open for civilian use and Restricted service which may be encrypted for authorised users like for military. Currently we use the GPS system of the USA for navigation.

Some applications of IRNSS are:

  • Terrestrial, Aerial and Marine Navigation.
  • Disaster Management.
  • Vehicle tracking and fleet management.
  • Integration with mobile phones.
  • Precise Timing.
  • Mapping and Geodetic data capture.
  • Terrestrial navigation aid for hikers and travellers.
  • Visual and voice navigation for drivers.
  • To date, ISRO has built a total of nine satellites in the IRNSS series; of which eight are currently in orbit Three of these satellites are in geostationary orbit (GEO) while the remaining in geosynchronous orbits (GSO) that maintain an inclination of 29° to the equatorial plane.

The eight operational satellites in the IRNSS series, namely 

  • IRNSS-1A: Jul 02, 2013; 
  • 1B, Apr 04, 2014;
  • 1C: Oct 16, 2014;
  • 1D:  Mar 28, 2015;
  • 1E: Jan 20, 2016; 
  • 1F: Mar 10, 2016, 
  • 1G:  Apr 28, 2016; and 
  • 1I : Apr 12, 2018.
  • The PSLV-39 / IRNSS-1H being unsuccessful; the satellite could not reach orbit.


  • India became one of the 5 countries having their own navigation system like GPS of USA, GLONASS of Russia, Galileo of Europe and BeiDou of China. So India's dependence on other countries for navigation purposes reduces.
  • It will help scientific & technological advancement in India. It is important for the country’s sovereignty and strategic requirements.
  • It will help the mariners for far navigation and fishermen to get information about the valuable fisheries location and any disturbance in Sea. 
  • It will help to make friendly relations with other countries by providing real time information during any calamity or disaster to mitigate its after effect and for making early plans.

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