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In News:

  • India will launch its latest communication satellite, GSAT-7A from Satish Dhawan Space Centre at Sriharikota onboard the Geosynchronous Satellite Launch Vehicle GSLV-F11 on December 19.


  • The 2,250 kg GSAT-7A is the 35th Indian Communication satellite built by ISRO. It is configured on ISRO’s standard I-2000 Kg (I-2K) Bus, the space agency said.
  • The satellite with a mission life of eight years is built to provide communication capability to the users in Ku-band over the Indian region, the ISRO added.
  • The satellite will be placed in its final Geostationary Orbit (GEO) using the onboard propulsion system, ISRO said, adding GSAT-7A will take a few days after separation from the launcher to reach its orbital slot.


  • Geosynchronous Satellite Launch Vehicle (GSLV), in its 13th flight, will inject GSAT-7A into a Geosynchronous Transfer Orbit (GTO).
  • GSLV-F11 is ISRO’s fourth generation launch vehicle with three stages.
  • The four-liquid strap-ons and a solid rocket motor at the core form the first stage of the launch vehicle, while the second stage is equipped with high thrust engine using liquid fuel, the space agency said on its website.
  • The Cryogenic Upper Stage forms the third and final stage of the vehicle.

Significance of GSAT-7A:

  • The satellite will enable the IAF to interlink different ground radar stations, ground airbase and airborne early warning and control (AWACS) aircraft and DRDO AEW&CS.
  • The satellite will also enhance Network-centric warfare capabilities of the Indian Air Force and therefore enhance its global operations.
  • GSAT-7A is also expected to give a major push for drone operations as it would help the Navy reduce the reliance on on-ground control stations and take satellite-control of military unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV), which should help boost the range and endurance of the UAVs.
  • In addition to GSAT-7A, the IAF would also be getting the GSAT-7C in a few years, to boost the network-centric operations.
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