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Post at: Jul 29 2022

GAGAN Satellite Navigation Technology

Why in News?

  • In April 2022 home grown carrier indiGo used indigenously developed GAGAN Satellite Navigation System for operations of one of its satellite.

How it happened?

  • IndiGo carried out a landing operation of one of its flight at Kishangarh Airport near Ajmer with an ATR72 aircraft using GAGAN Navigation System.
  • It was carried out by Airport Authority of India (AAI) in presence of DGCA officials.
  • With this IndiGo became the first airline in Asia that used the indigenously developed satellite-based navigation system.

Technical Functionality of GAGAN

  • It consists of set of ground reference stations positioned across various locations in India called Indian Reference Station (INRES), which gathers GPS satellite data.
  • A master station, Indian Master Control Centre (INMCC) collects data from reference stations and create GPS correction messages. 
  • The corrected differential messages are uplinked via Indian Uplink Station (INLUS) and then broadcasted on a signal from three geostationary satellites (GSAT-8, GSAT-10 and GSAT-15). 
  • The information on this signal can be read by any SBAS enabled GPS receiver.

Usability of GAGAN

  • Provides services with integrity and accuracy that is required for civil aviation applications.
  • It is built to provide best possible navigational services over Indian FIR (Flight Information Region) with the capability of expanding to neighboring FIRs.
  • Apart from flight navigation GAGAN system is being used for effective management of wildlife resources and monitoring of forests using GAGAN enabled GPS SXTREO-T51.
  • It can provide navigational support to Indian railway for signalling when train approaches to no man crossing and also for alignment of railway tracks.
  • GAGAN signals can also be used to manage traffic in real time to avoid traffic jams.

Coverage Area

  • Its footprint expands from Africa to Australia.
  • System can be augmented to cover neighbouring countries of India.


  • Aircrafts use radio navigation for the purpose of precision landing. However, the smaller airports have a shortage of modern navigation aids.
  • The visibility requirements in such smaller airports are much higher. 
  • Using the GAGAN technology, an aircraft can operate with a visibility of about 800 m. ( visibility requirement for all regular passenger flights without GPS aid at Kishangarh airport is 5,000 metres)
  • Extremely accurate information is provided by GAGAN regarding an aircraft’s location, covering various parameters like longitude, latitude, and height.


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