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India to launch border reconnaissance satellite


India to launch border reconnaissance satellite

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Source: Reuters

India is set to launch its Geo-imaging Satellite 1 (GISAT-1) today to increase its reconnaissance capabilities over the Indian subcontinent.

GISAT-1 is a geostationary earth observation satellite with state-of-the-art imaging technology that will allow India to better monitor the subcontinent using high fidelity imagery in near real-time. Placing the satellite in geosynchronous orbit means that it will be out of range of any anti-satellite weaponry fielded by its regional rival, China.

Of particular interest to Indian authorities are the northern Indian borders. India, which has been involved in several border skirmishes with China, is aggressively building up its infrastructure to defend its territory. Employing this satellite will provide India with the capability to observe and preemptively position itself against Chinese troop movements on its border. India is also building up its launch capabilities and plans an April launch of a new Small Satellite Launch Vehicle. This capability will place India in direct competition with China, which is pursuing its own satellite constellations to gain communications and information control over the region. Expect the India-China space race to heat up as both countries seek to assert dominance in the space domain. Controlling space means controlling critical communications and information networks over the region.

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