ISRO Successfully Launched GSLV-F14/INSAT-3DS

The Indian Space Research Organisation (Isro) on Saturday successfully launched the INSAT-3DS mission into space aboard the heavy-lift Geosynchronous Satellite Launch Vehicle Mk-II (GSLV-MkII).

The mission, designed to operate in space for 10 years, aims to boost India’s environment monitoring, oceanic observations, weather forecasting, and disaster relief operations. It took off from the Satish Dhawan Space Centre in Sriharikota at 5:35 pm IST on 17th February 2024.

The launch vehicle ascended through the Earth’s atmosphere, propelling the satellite into an initial geostationary transfer orbit. Subsequently, the satellite would undergo maneuvers to transition into a geostationary orbit encircling the planet. Positioned over 35,000 kilometers above the Earth’s equator, this orbit enables the satellite to maintain a fixed position relative to the Earth’s surface, facilitating stable communication and observation capabilities.

The INSAT-3DS, a state-of-the-art meteorological satellite, is the latest addition to India’s third-generation satellites in geostationary orbit.

It follows the successful development of its predecessors, INSAT-3D and INSAT-3DR, which have been instrumental in enhancing weather observation and analysis since their respective launches, with INSAT-3DR having been operational since September 2016.

The satellite, known as INSAT-3DS, boasts advanced instrumentation tailored for comprehensive Earth observation and atmospheric analysis. At its core is a multi-spectral Imager, equipped with an optical radiometer capable of capturing detailed images of the Earth and its surroundings across six distinct wavelength bands. This sophisticated imaging capability provides invaluable insights into various environmental phenomena.

In addition to its imaging prowess, INSAT-3DS features a robust Sounder payload comprising a total of 19 channels, including one Visible channel and eighteen narrow spectral channels. This Sounder payload is instrumental in profiling the vertical structure of the atmosphere, offering crucial data on temperature, humidity, and other atmospheric parameters essential for weather forecasting and climate monitoring.

Complementing its Earth observation capabilities, the satellite is equipped with a Data Relay Transponder (DRT) tasked with receiving meteorological, hydrological, and oceanographic data from automatic Data Collection Platforms (DCPs) and Automatic Weather Stations (AWS) deployed worldwide. The DRT then relays this vital information to user terminals, facilitating efficient global data dissemination and enhancing our understanding of Earth’s dynamic systems.

Furthermore, INSAT-3DS incorporates a Satellite-aided Search and Rescue (SA&SR) transponder, designed to detect distress signals and alerts from beacon transmitters. This capability significantly bolsters Search and Rescue operations, providing global coverage in the UHF band and enabling rapid response to emergencies and disaster situations.

Together, these advanced payloads underscore the pivotal role of INSAT-3DS in advancing Earth observation, weather forecasting, and Search and Rescue capabilities on a global scale. With its cutting-edge technology and comprehensive suite of instruments, INSAT-3DS stands poised to make significant contributions to our understanding of the Earth’s environment and our ability to respond to emergent challenges.

The satellite’s primary objectives are multifaceted and crucial for environmental monitoring and safety. It is equipped to monitor the Earth’s surface and carry out oceanic observations in various spectral channels that are vital for meteorological analysis.

Weighing in at 2274 kilograms, the INSAT-3DS satellite is outfitted with state-of-the-art payloads meticulously engineered to furnish precise and timely data about atmospheric conditions.

This technological upgrade heralds a new era in meteorological services, promising substantial advantages across a spectrum of sectors including agriculture, aviation, and disaster management. By furnishing more accurate and comprehensive insights into weather patterns, the satellite empowers stakeholders to proactively prepare for and mitigate the impacts of weather-related challenges.

Of particular significance is the satellite’s capacity to furnish vertical profiles of key atmospheric parameters such as temperature and humidity. These critical data sets serve as linchpins for the formulation of precise weather forecasts, enabling stakeholders to make informed decisions and take appropriate actions in response to evolving weather dynamics.

The enhanced meteorological services facilitated by INSAT-3DS represent a significant stride forward in our collective ability to anticipate and respond to weather-related phenomena. With its advanced payloads and unparalleled capabilities, the satellite stands poised to revolutionize our approach to weather forecasting and disaster preparedness, ushering in a new era of resilience and efficiency across various sectors.

Data Collection Platforms (DCPs) will benefit from the satellite’s data collection and dissemination capabilities, enhancing the reach and efficiency of information gathering. Moreover, the INSAT-3DS will offer Satellite Aided Search and Rescue services, contributing to emergency response efforts.

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