INSAT-3A Reaches Its Space Home

Status Report From: Indian Space Research Organisation
Posted: Saturday, April 26, 2003

ISRO's latest multipurpose satellite, INSAT-3A, which was launched on April 10, 2003 from Kourou in French Guyana, has been successfully placed in its final geo-stationary orbital slot at 93.5 deg East longitude.

It may be recalled that, after the injection of the satellite into geo-stationary transfer orbit by Ariane launch vehicle, orbit-raising manoeuvres were carried out from ISRO's Master Control Facility (MCF), Hassan, by firing the 440 Newton Liquid Apogee Motor on board the satellite to place it in the geo-stationary orbit. At the end of these manoeuvres on April 14, 2003, the satellite was allowed to drift slowly towards its designated orbital slot. In this drift orbit, deployment of antennas and solar arrays was carried out on April 15, 2003. The solar sail on the north side of the satellite was deployed on April 16, 2003 and INSAT-3A put in three-axes stabilised mode. The meteorological instruments namely Charge Coupled Devise (CCD) Camera and Very High Resolution Radiometer were tested on April 17th and 18th respectively.

In the last five days, station acquisition manoeuvres were successfully conducted from MCF, Hassan, by firing the 10 Newton Reaction Control Thrusters on board to position INSAT-3A precisely at 93.5 deg East longitude. The satellite will be maintained in this location for the rest of its service life.

In the coming weeks, the payloads comprising 12 C-band transponders, six extended C-band transponders, and six Ku-band transponders and the mobile satellite service transponders will be tested before INSAT-3A is commissioned in to service.

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