NavIC India’s own GPS navigation system

What is NavIC ?

Navic is the operational name of the Indian Regional Navigation Satellite System (IRNSS) developed by ISRO. Unlike GPS which is a Global tracking constellation, NavIC has been designed to focus especially on India and adjoining regions extending up to 1,500km from boundaries.

NavIC can offer 2 forms of services Standard Positioning Service (SPS) which is provided to all the users and another is Restricted Service (RS), which is an encrypted service provided only to the authorized users. Indian Space Research Organisation says the NavIC is mainly aimed at users in India as well as users in the region extending up to 1,500km from the country’s boundaries.

According to ISRO, the NavIC technology will be used for things like disaster management, terrestrial navigation assistant to hikers and travellers, vehicle tracking and fleet management, precise timing, aerial and marine navigation and more.

How will NavIC benefit smartphone users

NavIC enhancements can improve user expertise for location-based applications, and can enhance location pursuit in dense urban environments where geolocation accuracy tends to degrade, wherever the US-built Global Positioning System (GPS) lacks in navigating through densely built areas, with the help of NavIC, it will be easier to locate your way around dense areas.

NavIC consist of total 7 satellites that are stationed within the high orbit of the Earth which is approximately at an altitude of 35k km from Earth’s surface, all of the satellites are in direct line of sight with India ISRO maintains the proper line of sight by rotating the satellites at a fixed velocity. The satellites complete one complete rotation in 23 hours, 56 minutes, and 4 seconds which is the exact orbital period of the Earth so it matches completely.

Among the 7 satellites, 3 revolve in the geostationary orbit and are constantly in direct line of sight with India’s ground station. Whereas, 4 of the satellites are in the geosynchronous orbit inclined at 29 degrees to the Equator.

NavIC vs GPS: The Future of India’s Satellite Navigation System

  • Coverage

NavIC is a regional satellite navigation system that covers India and some neighboring countries. It covers the whole of India and 1500kms of the area from its borders. The coverage of NavIC extends to Bangladesh, Pakistan, Sri Lanka.

Whereas, GPS covers the whole world so there is no competition here in terms of coverage. However, we have to remember again that NavIC has been developed for India and will extend its coverage in the coming years soon.

  • Satellites

Currently, NavIC has a total of 7 satellites in Earth’s orbit and GPS has a total of 31 operational satellites rotating around the Earth. While GPS needs only 24 satellites to cover all the regions, recently the US increased the number of satellites for accurate location mapping. Also, it must be noted that India has kept two additional satellites on the ground as stand-by.

  • Superior and Faster

NavIC is superior and faster than GPS because it worked in dual band (L5 and S band) while GPS worked in a single band that’s why NavIC shows data faster and accuratly.

Is NavIC better than GPS?

Of course, yes. NavIC can reach an accuracy of up to 5-10 meters whereas GPS is generally believed to have an accuracy of up to 20m. Not only the accuracy, but NavIC is said to have a faster latch-on time, which is technically referred to as Time To First Fix (TTFF). What this means is that NavIC can detect your precise location faster than GPS even in dense urban areas with lots of tall buildings and obstructions.

The  NavIC consists of 7 active satellites.

  1. IRNSS-1A
    • ORBIT – Geosynchronous (IGSO) / 55°E, 29° inclined orbit
  1. IRNSS-1B
    • ORBIT – Geosynchronous (IGSO) / 55°E, 29° inclined orbit.
  1. IRNSS-1C
    • ORBIT – Geostationary (GEO) / 83°E, 5° inclined orbit.
  1. IRNSS-1D
    • ORBIT – Geosynchronous (IGSO) / 111.75°E, 31° inclined orbit.
  1. IRNSS-1E
    • ORBIT – Geosynchronous (IGSO) / 111.75°E, 29° inclined orbit.
  1. IRNSS-1F
    • ORBIT – Geostationary (GEO) / 32.5°E, 5° inclined orbit.
  1. IRNSS-1G
    • ORBIT – Geostationary (GEO) / 129.5°E, 5.1° inclined orbit.

NavIC support in upcoming mobile phones. Qualcomm Technologies in collaboration with ISRO has developed chipsets that support the Indian  regional navigation system. Now in your android, you can find Navic with other navigation system like GPS, GLONASS, Baidu.

The processor which supports NavIC  now a days

1.)          Qualcomm Snapdragon 460 mobile platform

2.)          Qualcomm Snapdragon 662 mobile platform

3.)          Qualcomm Snapdragon 720G mobile platform

4.)          Qualcomm Snapdragon 765 mobile platform

5.)          Qualcomm Snapdragon 765G mobile platform

6.)          Qualcomm Snapdragon 865G mobile platform

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