ISRO is a pride of India and their achievements are continuous. Whether it is Chandrayaan 2 or Mars Orbital Mission, ISRO proves excellence and intelligence every time. Now, the Indian Space Research Organization is ready to make commercial use of its service which is NavIC. This commercial division is Antrix Corporation Limited, which will provide NavIC to the citizens.
What is NavIC
NavIC is a group of seven satellites that is also called the Indian Regional Navigation Sattelite System. It has three geostationary satellites and four geosynchronous satellites. The first satellite was launched in 2013 that is IRNS 1A which is right now not in the operational stage due to atomic clock failure. ISRO has full control over it for space segment, ground segment, and user receivers.
Satellites for NavIC
List of Operational Satellites
List of Planned Satellites
In 2013 IRNSS-1A has three rubidium atomic clocks onboard IRNSS-1A had failed.
IRNSS-1H was launched to replace IRNSS-1A but due to payload fairing failed to separate and satellites could not reach the desired orbit.
ISRO-Qualcomm Pact and Commercial Availability
American chipset manufacturer Qualcomm has been successfully tested and developed a chipset that is compatible with NAVIC. The chairman of Qualcomm India says that they have developed a platform that will help in using ISRO’s navigation system on mobile devices and other navigation devices. It is confirmed that it will come in smartphones in the first half of 2020. At Indian Mobile Congress they show the demo of NavIC.
Apart from NavIC and GPS, the chipset is also capable of handle global navigation satellite systems of Europe (Galileo), Russia (GLONASS) and China (Beidou).
Importance of NAVic
From a consumer point of view, it is not something very important as we have a well-identified navigation system. But when it comes to a country’s point of view than it makes notable importance. India has a history from which we learn that we should have our own global navigation system. During the Kargil War, when a hostile situation ensued, the US refused to let the Indian Army use its navigation system which is GPS. Also, it is speculated that GPS was scrambled during the Brahmos missile test in 2012. So, it is a must to have our navigation system.
The first early commercial use of Navic is possibly for transporters of resources such as coal, mined ore, and sand in various states. Currently, those transporters use GPS for navigation.
“Mining and transportation sectors need vehicle tracking applications that are tied to revenue sharing systems of the governme`nt,” said Mr. Rakesh.
“Many are using a GPS-based system to check pilferage [and fudging]. They can now add NavIC to this and to new activities,” he added.
Through Qualcomm chipset, it can be used in smartphones, automotive and IoT. The leverage will start for Qualcomm Technologies platforms for OEMs from November 2019.