Will Vikram create a history for India? Final Countdown for India’s Biggest Moon Mission

By Dheeshma  Published on  6 Sep 2019 12:44 PM GMT
Will Vikram create a history for India? Final Countdown for India’s Biggest Moon Mission

Hyderabad: With barely few hours left for India’s ambitious moon mission ‘Chandrayan 2’, ISRO Chairman K Sivan said everything was going according to the plan. The Moon lander ‘Vikram is set to land on the lunar surface.

“We’re eagerly waiting for the event. Everything is going well according to the plan,” the Chairman said on Friday.

If everything goes well, Chandrayan will do its powered-descent between 1 am and 2 am on September 7, 2019. ISRO chairman calls this a ‘terrifying’ moment as this is the most complex mission ever undertaken by ISRO. The moon lander Vikram separated from its orbiting mothership and completed two manoeuvres. This reduces its altitude for a perfect touchdown.

Once the manoeuvre starts, it takes 15 minutes to land on the surface of the moon.

“The 15 minutes travel of lander is new to ISRO. For the first time, we're going to Moon. There is no atmosphere on the Moon. So, using the propulsion system, we will have to break the velocity and bring the vehicle safely to soft-land. For this, we will have to balance between the gravity and thrust. So, we have to modulate the thrust of the engine,” said K Sivan.

PM to witness the moon landing

Prime Minister Narendra Modi will be at the ISRO control room in Bangalore to see the moon landing live. Prime Minister Modi along with 60-70 high school students from across the country will watch the live show.

“I have been regularly and enthusiastically tracking all updates relating to Chandrayaan 2 since it was launched on July 22, 2019,” Prime Minister tweeted.

The Prime Minister has also urged the nation to witness the special moments of Chandrayan 2. Interestingly, Modi has also offered people an opportunity to be re-tweeted by him.

“Do share your photos on social media. I will re-tweet some of them too,” said Mr Modi in his tweet.

Chandrayan 2 going where no one has ever gone

If all goes well as planned, India will be the first country to launch a mission to the completely unexplored south polar region of the moon.

According to the ISRO, the South Pole region is particularly interesting because the lunar surface region remains in shadow and it's much larger than the North Pole. ISRO also hopes for the presence of water in areas around the South Pole that are permanently shadowed.

“The entire scientific community in India and the world are eagerly waiting for the mission,” added the ISRO Chairman.

Former ISRO scientist Nambi Narayanan said: “If you compare Chandrayan 1 with Chandrayaan 2, the basic difference is that we are doing the soft landing. The former was done by PSLV, and here we are using GSLV Mk III, meaning that we have more payload capability.”

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