Science

GSAT-6A still eludes ISRO

ISRO’s GSLV-F08 rocket carrying communications satellite GSAT-6A lifts off from the spaceport at Sriharikota on March 29, 2018.

ISRO’s GSLV-F08 rocket carrying communications satellite GSAT-6A lifts off from the spaceport at Sriharikota on March 29, 2018.   | Photo Credit: S. R. Raghunathan

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Contact yet to be re-established with the delinked communication satellite

Contact is still to be re-established with the delinked communication satellite GSAT-6A, according to an ISRO official.

Engineers at the ISRO Master Control Facility at Hassan continued to try to hook up with it on Monday. “We must wait for Tuesday when it is expected to fly over India,” the official said.

Apparently, the best efforts to reach Indian satellites can be made from the two inland MCFs — at Hassan and Bhopal — although ISRO has a handful of ground stations across the world to track its satellites.

Team set up

A team led by former director of ISRO Satellite Centre P.S. Goel is to look into the latest anomaly and how to address it in future missions.

GSAT-6A was sent to space on March 29 on ISRO’s GSLV rocket. However it stopped sending signals soon after the second routine orbit raising exercise was performed on March 31.

It had then reached an orbit of around 36,000 km x 20,000 km and would be circling Earth every 18-20 hours.

ISRO Chairman K. Sivan said on Sunday that his team was not yet giving up on the satellite, said to be important for strategic communications in remote areas and for the armed forces. “We hope to recover the satellite and will keep on trying to contact it,” he had said.

If they cannot do so, the satellite will continue to go around Earth idly until it loses height and comes down one day.

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Printable version | Dec 14, 2019 6:31:08 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/sci-tech/science/gsat-6a-still-eludes-isro/article23417662.ece

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