In an official press release, the government recently announced that IRNSS (Indian Regional Navigation Satellite System) has been recognized by the IMO (International Maritime Organisation). It will now operate as part of the WWRNS (World Wide Radio Navigation System) to assist merchants in navigation in the Indian Ocean region.
This is an important feat for India as it is only the fourth country in the world to be recognized by the IMO. India joins the likes of Russia, China, and the United States.
A “significant achievement of Ministry of Ports, Shipping and Waterways (MoPSW), Directorate General of Shipping (DGS) and Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) towards Atmanirbhar Bharat,” states the official statement. The IRNSS will enable any ships up to 1500 kilometers from the Indian boundary to use its satellite system over GLONASS or GPS to better navigate their way around the ocean waters.
The IRNSS is an independent regional navigation satellite system developed in India. It is designed to provide accurate positioning data to not only users in India (via mobile chips that support it) but also to any region extending up to 1500 km from our boundary. Further, since the IRNSS could be a forgettable name, our Honorable PM Narendra Modi coined the name NavIC for this service.
So essentially, the NavIC positioning system has now been recognized for use by the IMO. It can now be used by everyone, even small fishing vessels. It was earlier under testing as part of a pilot program. This navigation satellite system is made up of eight satellites and well, you can read about NavIC right here. And if you are curious about how NavIC is different (or better) from GPS, then we have answered that as well.