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India on Wednesday (Dec 19) successfully launched its latest advanced satellite, GSAT-7A, from Andhra Pradesh’s Sriharikota.

‘Angry Bird’, GSAT-7A will give a boost to the strategic communication and networking capabilities of the Indian Air Force.

After the launch, the chairman of ISRO, Dr K Sivan, said: “In 35 days, this was the 7th mission by ISRO… four Indian made satellites have been launched and 3 rockets have been successfully launched from Sriharikota.” The upgraded GSLV Mk II rocket “performed marvelously” he added.

“Congratulate @isro for successfully launching the advanced communication satellite GSAT-7A, with launch vehicle GSLV-F11, from #Sriharikota in Andhra Pradesh today. The 2250 kg satellite built by #ISRO will be a big boost to our defence capabilities,” tweeted Vice-president Venkaiah Naidu.

Things to know about the satellite and the launch:

The Indian Space Research Organisation’s Geosynchronous Satellite Launch Vehicle (GSLV-F11) launched communication satellite GSAT-7A from the Satish Dhawan Space Centre in Sriharikota at 4.10pm.

The launch was the seventh mission of Isro from Satish Dhawan Space Centre in 2018. GSLV-F11 was also the seventh flight carrying indigenously developed cryogenic upper stage.

This will be the 39th Indian communications satellite to provide services to users in Ku-band over the Indian region. This frequency range is often used for satellite communications.

The 2,250 kg GSAT-7A has a mission life of eight years. It will provide for a secure mode of communication and will be for the exclusive use of the IAF. After reaching its orbit in a few days, it will facilitate exclusive frequency flight communications for IAF.

It will also reduce the possibility of snooping and leakage of information that’s possible while using satellites launched by foreign operators.

The Navy already has a similar satellite, the GSAT-7, which was launched in August 2013, said Navy spokesperson Captain DK Sharma. It helps the Navy warships, submarines and maritime aircraft with inputs across the Indian Ocean region and safe communications capacity.

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