We are not far from visiting the Moon for the second time, as the Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO) announced that it would carry out the second lunar mission, Chandrayaan-2, between July 5 and July 16, 2019, and that is very likely to stand up. On the Moon sometime around September 6, 2019.
India visited the moon under its Chandrayaan-1 mission in 2008, and now, after 11 years, ISRO will launch the mission’s successor to discover more about the mysterious celestial body. The mission provided information on the presence of water and ice on the lunar surface and, therefore, was considered successful. On this occasion, the main objective of ISRO is to operate a robot and study topography, mineralogy, water ice signatures and elemental abundance on the Moon. Here are five things you should know about India’s next lunar mission.
5 things about the Chandrayaan-2 mission that you should know
- The Chandrayaan-2 orbiter is a box-shaped spacecraft, consisting of an orbital mass of 2,379 kg.
- The spacecraft will carry three modules that will include an orbiter, a lander named Vikram and a rover named Pragyan.
- It will be launched aboard a GSLV-MkIII rocket (Geosynchronous Satellite Launch Vehicle), a three-stage heavy launch vehicle, from the Satish Dhawan Space Center on Sriharikota Island.
- The launch of India’s next lunar mission was canceled several times in the past. Initially, it was scheduled to launch between January 3 and February 16, 2019, but due to some incomplete tests, the mission was carried out in April. Later, ISRO finalized the launch of Chandrayaan 2 in July of this year.
- If India successfully completes the Chandrayaan 2 mission, it will become the fourth country after Russia, USA, and China in having achieved this historic feat.
A total of 12 scientific payloads are being employed for the mission, of which 11 are Indian and only one is American. These will study the surface of the moon, monitor quakes, and send back photos to Earth. Once Chandrayaan-2 lands on the lunar soil, India will become the fourth country to achieve a soft landing on the Moon, after the US, Russia, and China.