GSAT-10 satellite, ISRO’s 101st space mission, is ready to be launched from the Kourou launch base in French Guyana. GSAT-10, weighing 3400 kg at the lift off, is the heaviest that ISRO has built. GSAT-10 has been integrated with the Ariane-5 launch vehicle along with co-passenger communication satellite ASTRA-2F awaiting the launch scheduled at 0248 hrs on September 29, 2012 (IST). Necessary arrangements are being done for live telecast of the launch from Kourou Launch Base through Doordarshan.
About 31 minutes after lift off, GSAT-10 would be injected in a Geosynchronous Transfer Orbit with a perigee of 250 km and an apogee of about 36,000 km. From there, the satellite would be moved to Geostationary Orbit (circular 36,000 km above equator) by using the satellite propulsion system in a three step approach. After this, the solar panels and antennas would be deployed. In the next few weeks, the payload would be turned on to perform a series of extensive In-orbit Tests. The satellite is expected to be operational by November 2012. GSAT-10 satellite will be positioned at 83 deg East orbital location along with INSAT-4A and GSAT-12. The nominal operational life of GSAT-10 is expected to be 15 years.
GSAT-10 satellite, carrying 30 communication transponders [12 Ku-band, 12 C-band and 6 Extended C-Band] would provide vital augmentation to INSAT/GSAT transponder capacity. Also, it has a Navigation payload “GAGAN” that would provide improved accuracy of GPS signals (of better than 7 meters) to be used by the Airports Authority of India for Civil Aviation requirements. This is the second satellite in INSAT/GSAT constellation with GAGAN payload after GSAT-8, launched in May 2011.