Mission typeCommunications
COSPAR ID2003-013A Edit this at Wikidata
SATCAT no.27714
WebsiteINSAT 3A
Spacecraft properties
Launch mass2,950 kilograms (6,500 lb)
Dimensions2.8 x 1.7 x 2.0 metres
Power3.1 kilowatts
Start of mission
Launch date9 April 2003, 22:52 (2003-04-09UTC22:52Z) UTC
RocketAriane 5G V160
Launch siteKourou ELA-3
Orbital parameters
Reference systemGeocentric
Longitude93.5° East (0°00′N 93°30′E / 0°N +93.5°E / 0; +93.5)
Inclination74 degrees
Period12 years

INSAT-3A, a multipurpose satellite built by ISRO was launched by Ariane in April 2003. It is located at 93.5 degree East longitude. It is third satellite in INSAT-3 series after INSAT-3B & INSAT-3C. Built at a cost of $53 mn, it provides communication, weather, and search and rescue services.


INSAT 3A was launched by Ariane-5 launch vehicle of Arianespace on April 9, 2003, at 22.52 UTC from Kourou, French Guiana.[1] It was placed into a Geosynchronous Transfer Orbit (GTO), 30 minutes after the lift-off in 3-axis stabilized mode, with a perigee (nearest point to earth) of 859 km and an apogee (farthest point to earth) of 36,055 km and an inclination of 1.99 degrees with respect to the equator.[2] Its co-passenger on its launch was GALAXI-XII of PanAmSat. Its Master Control Facility (MCF) is located at Hassan, Karnataka (India). It is 3-axis body stabilised in orbit using momentum and reaction wheels, solar flaps, magnetic torquers and eight 10 N and eight 22 N reaction control thrusters. Its propulsion system consists of 440 N Liquid Apogee Motor MON-3 (Mixed Oxides of Nitrogen) and MMH (MonoMethylHydrazine) for orbit raising.

The satellite raised its orbit to GEO and arrived in the 93.5 degree East longitude orbital location.[3] It joined INSAT-3B and INSAT-3C which were already in orbit operating from a similar orbital location.[4]


Communication payload

The INSAT-3A communications payload consists of:[5]

Meteorological payload

The INSAT-3A meteorological payload consists of[5]



  1. ^ "Successful liftoff for Ariane-5". ESA. April 10, 2003. Retrieved January 7, 2023.
  2. ^ "INSAT-3A Launched" (Press release). ISRO. 9 April 2003. Archived from the original on 25 January 2024 – via SpaceRef.
  3. ^ "Insat 3A at 93.5°E". Archived from the original on 2004-05-08.
  4. ^ "FlySat G-Sat 15 - Insat 4B @ 93.5° East". Archived from the original on 2017-07-16. Retrieved 2010-12-23.
  5. ^ a b "Welcome to ISRO :: Satellites :: Geo-Stationary Satellite :: INSAT-3A". Archived from the original on 2014-10-31. Retrieved 2010-12-23.
  6. ^ "The Hindu : INSAT-3A takes over search and rescue services". Archived from the original on 11 March 2012. Retrieved 17 January 2022.