Elena Geo Systems: Showing Growth Paths with Ultra-Tech NavIC Based Navigation Solutions

S Velan Rao- Elena Geo Systems

Businesses in the navigation sector are expanding their wings in every business vertical, whether it is in smartphones, smartwatches, or even in logistics or telematics, navigation devices are being used to track and monitor the activities and see the progress and insights with the technology interface.

GPS is a widely utilized navigation system around the world. The global positioning system has 31 satellites of which 24 are required and are functional. This load of satellites is in a geosynchronous orbit working at a low radius. The Indian Government launched its satellite system commencing from 2008 after realizing the importance of the Satellite-based Navigation System. During the Kargil War, as per information available in social media, the American GPS was denied to India and so India started developing its navigation system called NavIC (Navigation with Indian Constellation).

The NavIC utilizes geostationary satellites in a higher orbit which brings about signals with fewer deterrents and utilizes dual band recurrence L5 and S-band which enables users to get more accurate and highly reliable navigation results with a large radius. It is more accurate, independent from other frequencies from American-based GPS, Chinese-based BEIDOU or BDS, Russian-based GLONASS which uses CDMA, European-based Galileo, and Japan-based QZSS.

With the huge demand, there are many players in the navigation solutions industry but no other like Elena Geo Systems. Elena Geo Systems is the only NavIC based navigation solutions providing company in India. Incepted in 2012, Elena Geo Systems is a niche that provides ultra-tech navigation solutions to its customers to boost up the monitoring and tracking process. The founder Lt Col V Shanmugavelan is the backbone behind Elena Geo Systems’ long-standing success.

The Company and its Early Days

Elena Geo Systems was incepted in Technology Business Incubator of IIT Kharagpur 2012. With the hard and smart efforts of the core team, the company moved to Bangalore in 2016 to expand further and mark its place in the vast global navigation industry landscape. Elena Geo Systems works only in the niche domain of NavIC-based monitoring solutions.

It has an end-to-end presence in this domain with its own set of hardware, software, and systems all optimized for NavIC, the most powerful Indian GPS. Elena is the only Indian company to operate in this domain, offering NavIC L5 and S-band signals-based hardware. Through indigenous research and development, it now has the best-suited solution for India and the Asian region.

In the early years, the team invested time to gain domain expertise and further developing ground-based algorithms. Elena’s founder went around the world to learn the subject. For their initial testing and improvement, they were using a multi-GNSS module from FURUNO ELECTRIC CO., a Japan-based company. The availability of IRNSS modules was still an issue. The founder’s earlier work in the GNSS domain, from 1998, and also his association with NavIC (IRNSS) since its inception in June 2008 helped the company to develop the monitoring solutions in the NavIC domain.

Elena follows an integrated approach in that it uses satellites of India (NavIC), US (GPS), Russia (GLONASS), and other augmentation systems, to give the best possible solution to the users. Our systems can replace all existing navigation systems in the equatorial region and can enable much more new applications which were not possible till now.

Elena Geo Systems is a specialist in NavIC. It is Of NavIC, By NavIC, and For NavIC.

Cutting through the Complexities 

To chisel a beautiful statue, you first need to hit the rock, which is what counts! Similarly, when starting a venture, you face challenges, which make up for the successful times of your organization. And tackling them with innovation and efficiency sails your boat! Elena has also faced challenges and tackled them well. The key challenges were:

  • The Indian Constellation of satellites (GAGAN & IRNSS) was not fully functional yet when the company began the work to develop satellite-based monitoring solutions.
  • The company was in quest of a suitable partner for the development.
  • The knowledge required to help the company was not available in the country.
  • No Multi GNSS hardware was available.
  • The company aimed to concentrate on testing the ground-level algorithms required for Indian geography.

And then the Growth Started…

The launching of Indian satellites and their stabilization from 2016 to 2018 triggered the growth of Elena. We were now having our satellites to use. The company could concentrate on the development of complete NavIC-based monitoring systems. Existing products in the GPS domain did not fulfill the requirements of the users. Elena developed its own set of hardware, software, and systems, all optimized for NavIC that made its end-to-end presence in this domain.

In the beginning, Elena was a technology start-up company, focusing on the development of products. Then, they gradually became innovators, providing monitoring solutions to the end-users through their innovation. Today, Elena Geo Systems is a leader in NavIC-based monitoring solutions.

The company’s revenue has grown from a few Thousands in the initial years to a few Lakhs and now they have touched a Crore. The company’s growth during the last financial year has been more than ten times than it was in the previous year.

Elena means someone who shows the path, someone who throws light on the new path.

“The requirement for having an Indian system can be fulfilled only if ground-based electronics and solutions are available what we call as a downstream application developed for utilizing our satellites. This is where we were focusing and we started Elena Geo Systems. The Indian Government launched its satellite system commencing from 2008 after realizing the importance of the Satellite-based Navigation System.

During the Kargil War, as per information available on social media, the American GPS was denied to India. We found that we needed to have someone dedicated to work in the navigation domain”, Lt Col V S Velan commented.

Today, Elena Geo Systems dominates the industry with its position as a global leader in the navigation space. Their solutions have unparalleled user experience as the company focuses on maximum accuracy with the most innovative technologies at affordable prices. Solutions created with the vision of continuous innovation through R & D work showcase their rich domain knowledge and a flexible & agile workflow. Elena provides the utmost cutting-edge technology to modernize road safety, ensuring security and operations.

Elena Geo Systems’ Industry-Leading and Differentiated Services:

Elena’s services enable enterprises to transform their processes to more sophisticated, more real-time to drive significant value, increase efficiency, optimize monitoring, manage associated risks through early notices, leverage advanced analytics to gain actionable insights, and deliver a superior tracking experience.

Their unique and innovative solutions are not only technologically and cognitively ahead but also advanced and sophisticated than any other company in the space. Elena’s navigation experience is more intuitive and proactively delivers actionable information to the users.

Elena has an end-to-end presence in this domain with its own set of hardware, software, and systems all optimized for NavIC. Through indigenous R&D, Elena has developed the core processor and built devices around it along with the supporting programs/algorithms and servers. This provides a complete spectrum of ‘Locating and Monitoring Devices’ with absolute reliability and an extremely high degree of accuracy.

Following is the List of Products Offered by Elena Geo Systems: –

  • Antenna: This is a Multi GNSS external antenna that can receive L1, L5, and S-Band navigation signals.
  • NavIC Module: Elena’s NavIC Modules are Multi GNSS, can receive NavIC (S and L5 Bands), GPS Solutions (L1, L2), GLONASS (L1), and SBAS.
  • NavIC Receivers: These are receivers built using Elena NavIC Modules. They bring full GNSS services to user applications with all advantages of NavIC.
  • IVTD: Elena Intelligent Vehicle Tracking Device is a versatile tracking device, easy to install and operate by the user. This receives NavIC signals and conforms to AIS-140 Standards.
  • IVTS: Integrated, Intelligent Monitoring System, which is versatile in its use and can be customized to any monitoring application of the user.
  • IATD: Elena Intelligent Asset Tracking Device is a standalone tracking device that can be kept on any asset that needs to be tracked temporarily.

Elena’s vision is to continuously innovate through R & D and bring out more user-applicable products and solutions.

The Key Achievements

From an early entrant in the market to a leadership position in the NavIC-based monitoring solutions domain, it was truly a satisfying effort. Elena is the only company on a date to have NavIC processor on a commercial basis. Its B2D module has no equivalence internationally. It provides the complete spectrum of ‘Locating and Monitoring Devices’ with absolute reliability and an extremely high degree of accuracy. The range and depth of Elena’s presence are unmatched and can be demonstrated.

Amongst many great customer experiences, their project for JSPL, Patratu plant, in 2013, where the project changed the way they perceived this technology is a special one as team Elena implemented many ‘firsts’ in the monitoring domain.

Elena Geo Systems has recently received ISO 9001:2015 Certification which further strengthens the quality process that the company follows. Quality is one of the four pillars and Elena Geo Systems is committed to provide the best quality products and services.

The Driving Force

Elena is a group of numerous creative, highly skilled, and passionate professionals. Talents from different social foundations with comparable interests and enthusiasm for innovation in navigation make the Elena group remarkable. Everyone in the team is excited and consistently looking for cutting-edge innovations to help users in running their tracking processes easily.

It’s not about the ideas, it’s tied in with getting thoughts going and that can show just with the cooperation.

Elena has a core team and technical teams which focus on a specific part of development. The technical team is hired based on their technical capabilities. The core team is taken up after a long process and filtration of suitable candidates. The company looks for interest in the candidates and gives them a free hand on developing their skills. Due to these efforts, Elena has a team of dedicated professionals capable to support the indigenous development of NavIC based solution consisting of hardware and software.

Lt Col V Shanmugavelan – Anchor of Company’s Growth.

Lt Col V Shanmugavelan, an Army Veteran, is a subject matter expert in Satellite-Based Navigation. He has four PG degrees, and six diplomas/certificate courses linked to this domain. He was a sponsored research scholar of MoD to IIT Kharagpur. In 2012, he was trained by the GIZ of Germany to understand German technology and to bring it to India. Being a founding member of the Integrated Space Cell (ISC), he is involved in NavIC from the inception stage since Jun 2008.

He was Part of the ISRO team for trial evaluation of the GLONASS-based Multi GNSS receivers and simulators. He was a member of the committee to draft the Indo-Russian GLONASS signal sharing agreement of 2010, this was signed by the Prime Ministers of India and Russia in Dec 2010. He was System Manager for the development of monitoring systems and GIS for the armed forces, from Jun 2003 till Jun 2011, when he moved to IIT Kharagpur.

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