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‘IRNSS now part of World Wide Radio Navigation System’

  • Category
    Science & Technology
  • Published
    1st Dec, 2020

The Indian Regional Navigation Satellite System (IRNSS) has been accepted as a component of the World

Context

The Indian Regional Navigation Satellite System (IRNSS) has been accepted as a component of the World Wide Radio Navigation System (WWRNS) for operation in the Indian Ocean Region by the International Maritime Organization (IMO).

What is IRNSS?

  • IRNSS is an independent regional navigation satellite system developed by India.
  • It is designed to provide accurate position information service to assist in the navigation of ships in Indian Ocean waters.
  • It could replace the US-owned Global Positioning System (GPS) in the Indian Ocean extending up to approximately 1500 km from the Indian boundary.

What does the International Maritime Organisation’s (IMO) recognition of the IRNSS mean?

  • The IMO is the United Nations’ specialised agency responsible for the safety and security of shipping and the prevention of marine and atmospheric pollution by ships.
  • With the recognition as a component of the of the World-wide Radio Navigation System (WWRNS), the Indian navigation system is similarly placed as GPS, most commonly used by marine shipping vessels across the world or the Russian Global Navigation Satellite System (GLONASS).
  • Unlike GPS, however, IRNSS is a regional and not a global navigation system.

Which other countries have their own navigation systems?

  • After the US, Russia and China that have their own navigation systems, India has become the fourth country to have its independent regional navigation system.

Significance of the achievement

  • This will enable merchant vessels to use IRNSS for obtaining position information similar to GPS and GLONASS to assist in the navigation of ships in ocean waters within the area covered by 50°N latitude, 55°E longitude, 5°S latitude, and 110°E longitude.
  • This is a significant achievement of Ministry of Ports, Shipping and Waterways (MoPSW), Directorate General of Shipping (DGS) and Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) towards ''Atmanirbhar Bharat''.
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