General Studies IIIScience and Tech



The Vice President, Shri M Venkaiah Naidu today suggested to ISRO to give a thrust to the indigenously-developed regional navigation satellite system, NaVIC for global use.

About NaviC:

  • It is an Indian Regional Navigation Satellite System or IRNSS.
  • The name NavIC was given by Prime Minister Narendra Modi after successful launch of the seventh navigation satellite, in April, 2016.
  • It was developed in India by Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) and its commercial wing ANTRIX.
  • It consists of 8 satellites located at a distance of approximately 36,000 Km. Currently, 7 satellites are active.
    • 3 satellites are in Geostationary Orbit (GEO)
    • 5 satellites are in inclined Geosynchronous Orbit (GSO)
  • NavIC (Navigation with Indian Constellation) is an autonomous regional satellite navigation system established and maintained by ISRO.
  • It covers India and a region extending up to 1 ,500 km beyond Indian mainland(primary coverage area). It provides position accuracy better than 20 m (20) and timing accuracy better than 50 ns (20).
  • The actual measurements demonstrate accuracy better than 5 m and 20 ns respectively.
  • NavIC based applications are being used in various civilian sectors, including, transport, map applications, and timekeeping.
  • The objective of the NavIC is to provide navigation, timing, and reliable positioning services in and around India.
  • Working of the NavIC is very similar to the Global Positioning System(GPS) implemented by the United States. 
  • The NavIC is certified by 3GPP (3rd Generation Partnership Project) which is responsible for coordinating mobile telephony standards globally.
  • Today major mobile chipset manufacturers like Qualcomm, MediaTek and Broadcom already support NavIC across various chipset platforms.
  • A few mobile phone OEMs have also released handsets, which can be enabled to receive NavlC through Over the Air firmware update.
  • Some examples for NavlC enabled mobile phones include the Redmi Note 9 series from Xiaomi, the Realme 6 series, the OnePlus Nord, etc.
  • NavlC is an indigenous positioning system that is under Indian control. There is no risk of the service being withdrawn or denied in a given situation.






Up to 5 meters

Up to 20-30 meters


S-band and L-Band

L- Band


Potential for NavIC use in civilian arena?

  • Some potential applications of the regional navigation system include:
  • Terrestrial, aerial and marine navigation;
  • Disaster management;
  • Vehicle tracking and fleet management;
  • Integration with mobile phones;
  • Precise timing (as for ATMs and power grids);
  • Mapping and geodetic data capture;
  • Terrestrial navigation aid for hikers and travellers;
  • Visual and voice navigation for drivers.
  • Precision surveys
  • Transporters of resources such as mined ore, coal and sand in various states currently use GPS-based systems to check pilferage and fudging. NavIC can be used in these sectors as a vehicle tracking applicationthat is tied to revenue sharing systems of the government.
  • Recently the government mandated that all national-permit vehicles must have tracking devices. As a pilot, many fishing boats were fitted with these devices that have a unique texting facility. NavIC will be used in extending this facility.
  • Lately NavIC was used to assess safety of unmanned level crossing.
  • NavIC support would be available for Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEMs). This will enhance the use of NavIC on mobile, automotive and Internet of Things (IoT) devices.
  • Since now Indian companies and start-ups can do the designing part, the potential market for NavIC-based products and integrated circuitscan be very large.

Indian Regional Navigation Satellite System (IRNSS)

  1. It is an independent regional navigational satellite system developed by India.
  2. Objective:
    • It is being designed to give precise position data service to users located in India and also to users in the area out-spreading up to 1500 Km from India’s boundary.
  • The two kinds of services provided by IRNSS will be: 
    • Standard Positioning Service (SPS) and 
    • Restricted Service (RS). 
  • The system can offer a position accuracy of more than 20 m within India which is the primary area of service.

The IRNSS is being constructed by the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) and is wholly under the Indian government’s control. The need for such a system of navigation is that the availability of global satellite navigation systems like the GPS is not assured in hostile conditions.

Countries with their own Navigation Satellite System

Some of the countries provide navigation systems on a global scale, some of them provide navigation on a regional scale. The following countries have their own navigation satellite system.

  1. The United States Global Positioning System (GPS) – World’s most used GPS system, operational from 1978. Constellation of 32 satellites.
  2. Russian GLONASS – It provides global coverage. It has a total of 26 satellites.
  3. European Union Galileo – Became operational in 2016, with a constellation of 30 satellites.
  4. Chinese BeiDou – Currently it provides regional coverage of the Asia- Pacific region, plans to provide global coverage by 2020. It has a total of 35 satellites.
  5. Japanese Quasi-Zenith Satellite System (QZSS) – It is a regional satellite system covering Japan and the Asia-Oceania region. It has a total of 4 satellites, 7 are planned.
  6. India (IRNSS-NAVIC) – Constellation of 8 Satellites.

Other Satellite Navigation Systems

Satellite Navigation Systems

Key Points

Global Positioning System (GPS)

  • Initiated in 1978 and achieved global coverage in 1995 and is owned by the United States government and operated by the United States Air Force.
  • It consists of 24 to 32 medium Earth orbit satellites in six different orbital planes.

Global Navigation Satellite System (GLONASS)

  • Operated by Roscosmos, a state corporation responsible for the space flight and cosmonautics program for the Russian Federation.
  • It became operational in 1982 and achieved global coverage in 1996, and again in 2011 (after the system had fallen into disrepair).
  • It has full global coverage with 24 satellites.


  • It was initiated in 2005 by the European Space Agency and projected to provide global coverage by 2020 with 30 satellites.

Quasi-Zenith Satellite System (QZSS)

  • It is operated by the Japanese government.
  • It is a four-satellite regional time transfer system and enhancement for GPS covering Japan and the Asia-Oceania regions.
  • Its services have been available on a trial basis since January 2018.


National Telecommunications Institute for Policy Research, Innovation and Training (NTIPRIT) 

  • It is an apex training institute of the Department of Telecommunications.
  • Establishment: In 2010 as National Telecom Academy.
  • Function & objectives: It  involved in conduction of induction Training for probationary officers of Indian Telecommunication Service Group — A (ITS Group A) recruited through All India based Engineering Services Examination conducted by UPSC. 

GPS Aided Geo Augmentation System (GAGAN)

  • It is a Space Based Augmentation  System (SBAS) jointly developed by ISRO and AAI to provide the best possible navigational services over Indian FIR (Flight Information Region) with the capability of expanding to neighbouring FIRs.
  • GAGAN is a system of satellites and ground stations that provide GPS signal corrections, giving you better position accuracy.
  • Services Offered: Aviation, Forest management, Railways signalling, Scientific Research for Atmospheric Studies, Natural Resource and Land Management, Location based services, Mobile, Tourism.
    • GAGAN provides the additional accuracy, availability, and integrity necessary for all phases of flight, from en-route through approach for all qualified airports within the GAGAN service volume.
  • GAGAN Payload is already operational through GSAT-8, GSAT-10 and GSAT-15 satellites.
  • GAGAN GEO footprint expands from Africa to Australia and GAGAN system has capability to cater 45 reference stations for expansion to neighbouring countries. 


Source: PIB

You can find many articles on SPACE  and SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY (part of GS III) in our website. Go through these articles share with your friends and post your views in comment section.

Leave a Reply

Open chat
Hello Dear Aspirant,
Join our whatsapp group here to get Daily Newspapers, Magazines, Monthly, Question Banks and much more..
Just ping us your Name..
See you then..!!!