BENGALURU: Come 2019, Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) will launch GSAT-20 — its second five-tonne class satellite after GSAT-11 — completing its network of high throughput communication satellites.
This along with GSAT-19, GSAT-29 and GSAT-11, all launched in 2018, is expected to boost communication capabilities of the country by providing high-speed internet of 100 Gbps or more to even rural areas in India. GSAT-20 will be among the 32 missions planned by ISRO in 2019 and will be the second heaviest satellite built by ISRO.
The satellite will complete a constellation of satellites which use special transponders to beam high frequency signals for better connectivity in the country. ISRO chairman K Sivan said on Friday that GSAT-20 is also expected to provide inflight internet connectivity also. “The launch of GSAT-20 will complete Government of India’s ‘Digital India’ programme. Along with the other GSATs (launched in 2018), it will meet the requirement of high-speed communication technologies of our country,” he said.
GSAT-20, which is expected to be launched in September, will be among the 32 missions of ISRO in 2019. While 14 will be launch missions, 18 will be spacecraft missions. Of the 14 launch missions, eight will use PSLV, two using Geosynchronous Launch Vehicle, two GSLV Mk-III and two using Small Satellite Launch Vehicle. Among the important spacecraft missions planned is Chandrayaan-2, which will be launched during mid- April or later in June if ISRO misses the April window.