IGNOU [Indira Gandhi National Open University] To Reach Remote Areas Through EDUSAT

October 18, 2004

EDUSAT is the first exclusive satellite dedicated to the educational sector. It is specially configured to meet the growing demand for an interactive satellite based distance education system for the country through audio-visual medium. The satellite will have multiple regional beams covering different parts of India- five Ku-band transponders with spot beams covering northern, north-eastern, eastern, southern and western regions of the country, a Ku-band transponder with its footprint covering the Indian mainland region and six C-band transponders with their footprints covering the entire country.

EDUSAT is primarily meant for providing connectivity to school, college and higher education sector and also to support non-formal education including developmental communication.

The scope of the EDUSAT programme is planned to be realized in three phases. In the first phase of pilot projects, a Ku-band transponder on board INSAT-3B, which is already in orbit, is being used. In the second phase, EDUSAT spacecraft once commissioned in orbit, will be used in a semi-operational mode with at least one uplink in each of the five spot beams. About 100-200 classrooms will be connected in each beam. In addition, to Karnataka, Maharashtra and Madhya Pradesh included under the first phase, coverage will be extended to two more states and one national institution.
In the third phase, EDUSAT network is expected to become fully operational. In this phase, ground infrastructure to meet the country’s educational needs will be built and during this period, EDUSAT will be able to support about 25 to 30 uplinks and about 5000 remote terminals per uplink.
While ISRO will provide the space segment for EDUSAT System and demonstrate the efficacy of the satellite system for interactive distance education, content generation would be the responsibility of the user agencies.

ISRO, in cooperation with the user agencies, is organizing national and regional conferences to create awareness about the EDUSAT and its capabilities. The quantity and quality of the content would ultimately decide the success of EDUSAT System which involves enormous effort by the user agencies including IGNOU which has already signed an MoU with ISRO.