India set to launch second lunar mission; land rover on the moon

The first glimpse of the lander and the orbiter. Image credit Tech2

The first glimpse of the lander and the orbiter. Image credit Tech2

The Chandrayaan-2 mission aims to deliver a rover to an elevated plane close to the uncharted lunar South Pole on September 6 or 7 and investigate the surface for signs of water and potentially new sources of abundant energy. India's second lunar mission is expected to reach and touch down on the Moon in September.

"This is not only ISRO's mission but the entire country's", Dr K.Sivan, chairman of space agency said in Bengaluru.

The rover and the lander of the mission will have a life of one lunar day, which is equal to 14 earth days, though the orbiter has a life of one year.

The orbiter and the lander would be interfaced mechanically and stacked together as an integrated module and accommodated inside the GSLV MK-III.

After launch into earth-bound orbit by GSLV MK-III, the integrated module will reach the Moon orbit using Orbiter propulsion module. Upon its successful landing, Vikram will release the rover, named Pragyan, which can move on the lunar surface for 500 metres. While the orbiter and lander will communicate to earth directly, the rover can not communicate directly because of some power limitations.

Chandrayaan-2 will explore the southern part of the Moon, Sivan added, making India the first country to do so. They were revealed at the ISRO Satellite Integration and Testing Establishment facility in Bengaluru.

Once there, a series of orbit-lowering burns will bring the stack into a more circular orbit in which it revolves around the Moon once every 24 Earth-hours, a situation it will maintain for four days.

The dead zone in the Gulf of Mexico can develop Macao
Fish and shellfish either leave the oxygen-depleted waters or die, resulting in losses to commercial and sports fisheries. According to the scientists, they expect the zone to be around 7,829 square miles, which is roughly the size of MA .

The cost of Chandrayaan 2 Mission mainly the satellite portion, including the support from foreign agencies as well as for navigation objective, is Rs. 603 crore, Dr Sivan added. Of the 14 payloads which Chandrayaan-2 will be carrying to the Moon, 13 are indigenous and one "passive payload" of Nasa.

The scientific payloads are expected to perform mineralogical and elemental studies of the lunar surface.

The Chandrayaan-2 was originally planned as a collaboration with Russia's Roscosmos space agency, but in 2013 India scrapped the tie-up due to technical differences with the Russian programme. GSLV MKIII, which will be carrying house the moon lander, weighs 3.8 tonnes. The orbiter is expected to be transported to Sriharikota in a couple of days while the lander will be taken there on 7 July.

The 1.4 tonne spacecraft was launched using PSLV and the orbiter had orbited 100 km from the lunar surface. It will also find the exact location of the lander on the moon.

From the time of Lander landing on the surface to theRover to come out and land on the surface will take four hours, according to him.

The announcement of the launch dates come nearly 11 years after prime minister Manmohan Singh approved the lunar mission on 18 September 2008. Sivan said at the conference that the period when the lander will attempt to descend on the lunar surface will encompass "the most terrifying moments" for the organisation. Sivan explained that one side of the rover wheel has Asoka chakra and other has ISRO symbol that will be imprinted on the moon as it rover moves on the moon's surface.

Latest News