Indian GPS NavIC to link to Aadhaar enrolment devices

The Centre has been pushing cell phone makers in India to make their instruments compatible with NavIC, a process that will involve hardware alterations.

August 10, 2023 11:20 pm | Updated August 11, 2023 09:21 am IST - NEW DELHI

Currently the Aadhaar enrolment kits that are used to collect and verify personal details are linked to American global positioning system. Photo: uidai.gov.in

Currently the Aadhaar enrolment kits that are used to collect and verify personal details are linked to American global positioning system. Photo: uidai.gov.in

The Navigation with Indian Constellation or (NavIC), which consists of seven satellites and India’s version of the American GPS (global positioning system), will soon be integrated into Aadhaar enrolment devices, the Department of Space (DoS) told the Parliamentary Committee of Science and Technology.

“The department has facilitated successful conduction of field trials, and is providing technical expertise in finalisation of procurement specification of the devices,” it said in response to queries by the committee. The committee made its report public on Thursday.

Currently the Aadhaar enrolment kits that are used to collect and verify personal details are linked to GPS. NavIC offers two services: Standard Position Service (SPS) for civilian users and Restricted Service (RS) for strategic users. These two services are provided in both L5 (1176.45 MHz) and S band (2498.028 MHz). NavIC coverage area includes India and a region up to 1,500 km beyond the Indian boundary. Newer satellites will have an additional band called L1 that will be compatible with civilian use.

The Centre has been pushing cell phone makers in India to make their instruments compatible with NavIC, a process that will involve hardware alterations. “Industry has already indicated willingness and readiness for incorporating NavIC in 5G handsets,” the DoS told the committee.

Disaster alert

The National Disaster Management Agency (NDMA) was already utilising NavIC as an alert dissemination system for major natural disasters like landslipSs, earthquakes, floods, and avalanches. The Indian National Centre for Ocean Information System (INCOIS) relies on it to broadcast cyclones, high waves, and tsunamis alert messages to fishermen venturing into the deep sea.

Some of the bodies that set interoperability standards, actively working on NavIC standards were the Bureau of Indian Standards (BIS), Telecom Standards Development Society, India (TSDSI), Telecom Engineering Centre (TEC), Third Generation Partnership Project (3GPP), Radio Technical Commission for Maritime Services (RTCM), International Electrotechnical Committee (IEC), and International Standards Organisation (ISO), the Department of Space added.

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