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India plans to launch 12 satellites
September 20, 2005 12:15 IST
India is planning to launch 10 to 12 communication satellites in the next four years with an investment of over Rs 3,000 crore (Rs 30 billion), G Madhavan Nair, chairman of Indian Space Research Organisation said on Tuesday.
"We are planning to orbit another 10 to 12 communications satellites into Geo-stationary orbit in the next four years. These satellites will increase our onorbit transponder capacity," he said inaugurating a satellite users' interference reduction group 2005 conference.
India's INSAT system today consists of eight operational satellites and 144 total communication transponders in C, extended C, Ku, and S frequency bands.
The 10 to 12 planned launches are expected to add an additional 100 to 120 transponders.
"We also have two of these satellites (out of total eight) carrying meteorological payloads, and one satellite being an exclusive meteorological satellite", he said. Nair said, "Currently, we have 144 transponders. We have to have something like 256 transponders before this plan period (2007) itself. Each spacecraft will cost around Rs 300 crore (Rs 3 billion)".
According to him, there is a huge demand for transponders from direct-to-home and VSAT sectors as well as for various applications. There is also need to replace some of the old satellites, he added.
The TV broadcasting and VSAT networks, he said, have become `niche' market for satellite services in India and half of the satellite TV channels and their news feeds covering India are in the INSAT system.
"There are two DTH systems already operating in India, and more such systems are being planned for the future", Nair said.
More than 50,000 VSATs operate in India in both extended C and Ku frequency bands.