The Indian Navy plans to deploy a dedicated naval communication and surveillance satellite between December 2010 and March 2011.

A senior defence ministry official said that the Indian Space Research Organisation would launch a naval satellite with a 1,000nm footprint over the Indian Ocean, according to the Times of India.

“The launch of the naval satellite worth Rs950 crore ($203.6m) will be followed by dedicated air force and army satellites in two years,” the official said.

The geostationary satellite together with the induction of eight P-8i long-range maritime patrol aircraft between 2013 and 2017 will ensure a significant increase in the navy’s C4ISR (command, control, communication, computer, intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance) capabilities.

Once the satellite is operational, the Indian Navy will be capable of networking all its warships, submarines and aircraft, as well as linking them with onshore operational centres through high-speed data-links.