News courtesy of CANSPACE Listserv.
The Indian Space Research Organisation’s GSAT-10 geostationary communications satellite was launched from the European spaceport in Kourou, French Guiana, on 28 September at 21:18 UTC. The dual-satellite launch also carried the Astra 2F direct-to-home broadcast satellite into orbit for Luxembourg-based operator SES.
GSAT-10 contains a payload to support the Indian GPS and GEO Augmented Navigation (GAGAN) satellite-based augmentation system. The satellite will likely use PRN code 128 from its orbital slot at 83 degrees east longitude.
NORAD/JSpOC is tracking four objects from the launch, all in geostationary transfer orbits:
1 38778U 12051A 12274.70409814 .00000012 00000-0 00000+0 0 107
2 38778 003.6775 154.7710 5937516 178.5931 014.2031 02.01889852 46
1 38779U 12051B 12274.00388870 -.00000099 00000-0 00000+0 0 93
2 38779 005.9367 154.4296 7276764 178.6603 185.9046 02.28251452 34
1 38780U 12051C 12273.56648427 -.00000125 00000-0 00000+0 0 70
2 38780 005.9425 154.5770 7276251 178.3304 186.5889 02.28343008 14
1 38781U 12051D 12273.55880826 -.00000125 +00000-0 +00000-0 0 00072
2 38781 005.9710 153.0905 7273242 179.7915 181.3163 02.28773171000012
The two satellites are accompanied by the Sylda 5 dual-payload adapter and the ESC-A upper stage of the Ariane 5 launch vehicle. It’s not yet known which objects are which.
Once GSAT-10’s GAGAN L-band payload is activated, the satellite will be tracked by stations of the International GNSS Service’s Multi-GNSS Experiment in addition to those of the official GAGAN monitoring and control network.
The following is from a press release issued by ISRO:
“ISRO’s Master Control Facility (MCF) took over the command and control of the GSAT-10 immediately after the injection. Preliminary health checks on the various subsystems of the satellite, namely, Power, Thermal, Command, Sensors, Controls, etc., were performed and all the parameters were found satisfactory. Following this, the satellite was oriented towards the Earth and the Sun using the onboard propulsion system. The satellite is in good health.
“In the coming five days, orbit raising maneuvers will be performed to place the satellite in the Geostationary Orbit with required inclination with reference to the equator. The satellite will be moved to the Geostationary Orbit (36,000 km above the equator) by using the satellite propulsion system in a three step approach.
“After the completion of orbit raising operations, the two solar panels and both the dual gridded antenna reflectors of GSAT-10 will be deployed for further tests and operations. It is planned to experimentally turn on the communication payloads in the second week of October 2012.
“After the successful completion of all in-orbit tests, GSAT-10 will be ready for operational use by November 2012. GSAT-10 will be positioned at 83deg East orbital location along with INSAT-4A and GSAT-12. The operational life of GSAT-10 is expected to be 15 years nominal.
“GSAT-10 Satellite has 30 Communication Transponders [12 in Ku-band, 12 in C-band and 6 in Extended C-Band]. Besides, it has a Navigation payload “GAGAN” that would provide GPS signals of improved accuracy (of better than 7 meters) to be used by the Airports Authority of India for Civil Aviation requirements. GSAT-10 is the second satellite in INSAT/GSAT constellation with GAGAN payload after GSAT-8, launched in May 2011.”