Published: Fri, July 12, 2019
Research | By Raquel Erickson

ISRO conducts checks at launch pad ahead of Chandrayaan-2 launch

ISRO conducts checks at launch pad ahead of Chandrayaan-2 launch

Chandrayaan-2 will deploy a lunar rover toward the moon's south pole. That rocket is about half as powerful as the SpaceX Falcon 9 and will put Chandrayaan-2 into what is known as an "Earth parking orbit" before the module uses its own power to extend its orbit and eventually position itself for a lunar rendezvous.

The country's first deep-space mission, Chandrayaan-1, launched in 2008, was instrumental in the discovery of water on the moon's surface.

The Indian space agency said the mission will also try to unravel the origins of the Moon. A soft landing is the process of slow landing a spacecraft to ensure no damage occurs during the process. Its chief, K. Sivan, told NDTV news that Vikram's 15-minute descent "will be the most terrifying moments as we have never undertaken such a complex mission". In addition, South Pole region has craters that are cold traps and contain a fossil record of the early Solar System.

The launch is now scheduled for Sunday, July 14 at 2:21 p.m. PT and will take place at India's Satish Dhawan Space Centre in Sriharikota, north of Chennai.

The solar-powered rover can travel up to 500 metres (yards) and is expected to work for one lunar day, the equivalent of 14 Earth days. Along with this, several other communication links will also be tested to ensure everything is prepared before the final launch of the Bahubali rocket and Chandrayaan 2 on July 14 at 6:51 AM Indian Standard Time.

Most experts say the geo-strategic stakes are small - but that India's low-priced model could win commercial satellite and orbiting deals. "Everything is progressing normally", said an official of Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO).

Very recently, a heavy mass of around 4.8 quintillion pounds was found in the same region where India's space mission is to be carried. If Chandrayaan-2 is able to find ice in this part of the moon, it will be easier for humans to stay here. After Chandrayaan I mission, we are now entering into Chandrayaan II mission.

"A spacecraft mission of the complexity of Chandrayaan-2 conveys a message that India is capable of delivering on hard technology development endeavours", said Ghosh.

Although both launched in 2013, Maven is estimated to have cost 10 times more, but India's Mangalyaan was only created to last about a year. The mission life of the Orbiter is one year and it will be placed in a 100X100 km lunar polar orbit. But author and economic commentator Gurcharan Das said that the cost of the second moonshot is small compared with India's overall budget and that the project could have a multiplier effect on the economy.

The mission also has one passive experiment from the USA space agency NASA. "So you get what you pay for", concluded Hubbard.

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