The first critical orbit-raising manoeuvre on INSAT-4B was successfully
conducted at 5:35 am this morning (March 13, 2007) with the firing of the 440
Newton Liquid Apogee Motor (LAM) on board for 93 minutes by commanding the
satellite from Master Control Facility (MCF) at Hassan in Karnataka. With this
LAM operation, INSAT-4B perigee has been raised to 14,244 km. The apogee is at
35,752 km and the inclination of the orbit with respect to the equatorial plane
has been reduced from 4.5 deg at the time of entering into orbit to 1.15 deg
now. The present orbital period is 15 hours 21 minutes.
It may be recalled that INSAT-4B was successfully launched by Ariane 5 launch
vehicle yesterday (March 12, 2007) from Kourou, French Guyana. The launch
vehicle placed INSAT-4B in the intended Gesynchronous Transfer Orbit (GTO) with
a perigee (closest point to the earth) of 250 km and apogee (farthest point to
earth) of 35,886 km. MCF acquired the first signals at 4:02 am IST on March 12,
2007 and conducted initial phase operations on INSAT-4B. The satellite which
had gone out of radio visibility of MCF at 2:04 pm yesterday, came within its
radio visibility again at 1:00 am this morning. The satellite was oriented
suitably before the start of LAM operations.
All systems on board the satellite are functioning normally. The satellite went
out of MCF radio visibility at 12:02 pm this afternoon. It will again come
within MCF's radio visibility at 6:11 am tomorrow. Further orbit raising
maneuvers are planned in the next few days.