Indian satellite EDUSAT | ISRO launched
Indian satellite EDUSAT
EDUSAT is the name given for the Indian satellite GSAT 3 which was meant for exclusive use for educational sector. The prime aim of EDUSAT is to cater to the needs of students seeking distance education from various universities, without having to personally attend class room sessions as in the case of conventional educational system. EDUSAT is the first of its kind to serve a sole purpose of meeting the administrative requirements of distance education in India. Of late, the entire process commencing from allotting admissions, collecting education fees, online class room sessions, online examinations, declaration of exam results till the issuance of course completion of certificates (along with merit gradations) has become quite a common exercise. The only exception where students are compulsorily required to attend the institutions personally is for practical classes in laboratories, both for learning as well as attending practical examinations. Distance education has done away with a lot of compulsions for students and faculty members. Students hailing from remote rural areas in the country find the system a precious boon for academic pursuits. This is all the more necessary for villagers seeking adult primary education. Shortage of qualified teachers/professors for a vast population of students was to be addressed by the concept of distance education. The management authorities of educational institutions too are relieved of the onus of having to maintain huge building complexes/campuses for class rooms and other related facilities.
The programme to make use of EDUSAT was known as EUP (EDUSAT Utilisation Programme). The beneficiaries of EUP at the national level were to be Indira Gandhi National Open University, National Council for Education Research and Training (NCERT), Integrated Disease Surveillance Programme (IDSP) and National Council for Science Museums (NCSM). The beneficiaries at the regional level were to be state governments, universities, colleges and schools.
EDUSAT was launched on 22nd September 2004 by the GSLV Mk F01 rocket from the FLP (First Launch Pad) at Satish Dhawan Space Centre, Sriharikota. The GSAT 3 was initially injected into an elliptical orbit with a perigee of 180 kilometers and apogee of 35985 kilometers and later manoeuvred into a near-circular orbit of perigee 36066 kilometers and apogee of 36084 kilometers. The initial inclination with respect to the equator was altered from 19.2 degrees to 2.71 degrees.
Since EDUSAT was the rudimentary attempt in educational sector, there were shortcomings in actual implementation of the programme like procrastination in setting up ground network, idling of network connectivity, anomalies in allocation and fixing network bandwidth, insufficient content generation, inadequacies in monitoring and evaluation. Ten networks of EDUSAT were shifted to other satellites in September 2008, seven networks were shifted to other satellite in June 2009 and thirteen more networks were shifted to other satellites in May 2010. EDUSAT could render its services for six years and was relocated to disposal orbit (graveyard orbit) in September 2010 due to power constraints in the satellite, one year before its designed mission life.