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India’s advanced weather satellite launched
July 26, 2013, 4:47 am

The satellite carries a six-channel imager and 19-channel sounder [Image: ISRO]

The satellite carries a six-channel imager and 19-channel sounder [Image: ISRO]

India’s advanced meteorological satellite INSAT-3D was successfully launched by a European rocket from the spaceport of Kourou in French Guiana early on Friday.

The satellite will upgrade India’s weather forecasting and disaster warning services.

Heavy-lift launcher Ariane 5 carried two satellites: Europe’s Alphasat telecommunication satellite as its upper payload, and India’s INSAT-3D meteorological satellite as the lower one.

The Indian satellite carries a six-channel imager and 19-channel sounder, as well as a data relay transponder for satellite-aided search and rescue operations.

“We are looking forward to an excellent operational performance of INSAT-3D for the next seven years making a difference for the weather forecasting and disaster warning systems for the country”, said Chairman of Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) K Radhakrishnan.

INSAT-3D significantly upgrades weather monitoring through its atmospheric sounding system, which provides vertical profiles of temperature, humidity and integrated ozone from surface to top of the atmosphere.

A few weeks ago India joined a select group of nations by putting a navigational satellite into orbit.

India is also planning a mission to Mars later this year, aiming to collect data on Martian methane sources.

The country’s President Pranab Mukherjee said earlier this year the space programme epitomised India’s scientific achievements and benefits the country in a number of areas.

“For India to occupy its right place in the comity of nations, we must promote innovation and technological advancement,” said President Mukherjee .

ISRO’s budget has increased to $1.3 billion in 2012 to 2013.

With inputs from Agencies