India has successfully launched the GSAT-7A communications satellite aboard a GSLV MkII. The launch was the third successful orbital mission the country has launched in a little over a month and the 13th of 2018.
The GSLV MkII carrying the GSAT-7A satellite was launched from the Satish Dhawan Space Centre at 10:40 UTC (16:10 local time) this morning. Following the launch, ISRO officials confirmed that the satellite had been deployed successfully and that it was operating nominally. Over the next few weeks, the satellite will perform a number of orbit-raising manoeuvres to reach its final geostationary orbit.
Weighing in at approximately 2,250 kilograms (4,960 pounds), the GSAT-7A is the heaviest satellite launched aboard a GSLV MkII rocket to date. The satellite was developed and built by India’s Space Applications Centre in conjunction with the ISRO Satellite Centre for the Indian Air Force (IAF).
The GSAT-7A features a Ku-band switchable frequency, a Gregorian reflector antenna and four steerable reflector antennas. It will enable the IAF to interlink a variety of ground and air assets.