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GSAT-2 orbit raised to 34,000km

May 10, 2003 22:29 IST

The second orbit raising operation of GSAT-2, the experimental communication satellite placed in space on Thursday by the country's own Geosynchronous Satellite Launch Vehicle, GSLV-D2, was successfully carried out on Saturday.

According to an official statement issued in New Delhi, the 440 Newton Liquid Apogee Motor on board the 1,825kg satellite was fired for 41 minutes by commanding the satellite from the Master Control Facility in Hassan in Karnataka, an official release said.

This raised the satellite's perigee [closest point to the earth] from 8,850km to 34,000km. The apogee [farthest point] is 36,000km and the inclination of the orbit with respect to the equatorial plane has been reduced from 7.37 degrees to the present 0.32 degrees.

Orbit raising operations are performed to raise the satellite from the Geo-Synchronous Transfer Orbit to the Geosynchronous Orbit.

The first such operation was carried out on Friday on GSAT-2, where it was raised to 8,850km.

GSAT-2 now has an orbital period of 23 hours and 4 minutes. The satellite will now be in the continuous radio visibility of MCF in Hassan.

The GSLV-D2 had lifted off from the Satish Dhawan Space Centre in Sriharikota on Thursday taking its second developmental test flight. The vehicle successfully placed the satellite in an orbit of 180km perigee and 36,000km apogee.

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