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Goodbye GPS! Here’s Why India’s Homegrown Navigation System IRNSS Is Revolutionary

It’s the system the Indian Space Research Organisation says will finally provide GPS connectivity to the most rural parts of India and come 2016, it could be fully operational and accurately guiding you to within 20 meters of your destination. The Indian Regional Navigation Satellite System (IRNSS) will give India its own Global Positioning System, something for which it is still dependent on the US-owned GPS system.

How does it work?

To completely cover the country, Isro will be using seven satellites of which four are already in orbit. So satellites IRNSS-1A, 1B, 1C, and 1D are already in orbit and the three remaining satellite IRNSS 1E, 1F and 1G – will be launched in January, February and March respectively. Â ISRO is hoping to have the IRNSS system operational by July next year and has been working to convince mobile device manufacturers, Global Information System Technology developers, and navigation device manufacturers to switch to the new system once it’s up and running. ISRO is asking device manufacturers to include additional hardware in devices to receive the signals from the IRNSS satellites, which one official had told the Times of India, would “reduce the errors caused by atmospheric disturbances significantly.”

How can you use IRNSS?

The IRNSS is expected to provide location accuracy to almost 20 meters. US-owned GPS has accuracy is also estimated to be around the same in India. Data from the IRNSS can be used in services like car navigation, aircraft and shipping routes, smartphones and other devices, the scientific advisor to the Defence Minister has been quoted as saying in a report. This will mean transport can be planned more efficiently since real-time, accurate data will be available for anything in India and up to 1500 km from its borders.

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