GSAT-16 and INSAT

We’ve had a good time discussing satellites on and off for a while now. India’s satellite program in general. And GSAT 16 in particular. This was prompted by the recent news that the 2nd raising manoeuvre of GSAT 16 took place on Dec-9.Here are some notes.
India’s satellite program
GSAT-16 was launched as part of the INSAT program. INSAT stands for Indian National Satellite System.
INSAT is a series of geostationary satellites that that ushered in, and fulfilled the demand of the telecommunications, TV and radio broadcasting, and meteorological sectors.This is different from India’s other major satellite program – IRNSS – Indian Regional Navigation Satellite System. Continue reading

Mangalyaan for Kids

It all started off with me trying to explain to my 7 year old about how a satellite works and how she is able to watch her favorite cartoon shows. Then from one planet to another, from one satellite to the other, from one small question to a whole chart of explanation to finally we mother-daughter duo decided that we wanted to build the Mangalyaan for the school science project. With our sky-shooting excitement levels, we knew we had to first carry out at least a basic research assignment on what, why and how was Mangalyaan. The more I read, the more I realized the pride that we all should be holding for such an important mission. I am not too sure whose eyes twinkled more, mine because of the pride and information Continue reading

Boltzmann constant – Putting it in perspective in Physics – Part 1

In this series, we will begin with the famous Boltzmann constant, and try to put it in perspective. That is, its most basic form, original usage, significance, where else it is used, who were the people involved, some chronology, historical perspective, etc. We’ll try to do this in small pieces, bite-size, non-overwhelming. This article is only the overview of what we’ll go into a little deeper in following articles. So we will start with the Boltzmann constant. And its basic form in the Ideal Gas Equation.We’ll look at its relation with the Universal Gas Constant and Avogadro’s number. We’ll look at these 2 terms a bit too. Then we will take a look at where else this term is used. Natural candidates are terms where the name Boltzmann is used. Continue reading