New Delhi: In an unprecedented move, India's space agency ISRO is recalling its mega communications satellite GSAT-11 all the way from Kourou in South America where it was to be launched on May 25 using the giant Ariane-5 rocket.
The satellite is being brought back to conduct more tests on it in the wake of the failed GSAT-6A satellite. This is the first time ISRO is recalling a satellite back from the launch pad.
The GSAT-11, sent to the Arianespace's rocket port in French Guiana last month, will be brought back to Bengaluru where it will undergo additional technical checks and may be opened up.
ISRO says the GSAT-11 satellite has some common components with GSAT-6A and they need to be tested again. The power systems, harness and antennas will be thoroughly checked. Sources in ISRO had hinted that a "power systems failure" led to the Rs 270 crore GSAT-6A satellite going AWOL.
Weighing nearly 5,700 kg, the GSAT-11 is a game changer as it promises to provide satellite-based internet service to the entire nation. It was designed, assembled and integrated by ISRO.
This advanced communications satellite is to provide multi-spot beam coverage over the Indian mainland and nearby islands, bringing significant advantages to the user community when compared with India's existing INSAT/GSAT satellite systems, Arianespace said earlier in a statement.
With its new system architecture and cutting-edge technology elements, GSAT-11 will generate a capacity of more than 12 Gbps for users from a single platform, the statement added.