It is the second lunar exploration mission developed by the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) to go where no other country has ever gone before. It consists of:
· The Orbiter which will observe the lunar surface and relay communication between Earth and Chandrayaan 2’s Lander – Vikram
· Vikram Lander designed to execute India’s first soft landing on the lunar surface
· Pragyan Lunar Rover a 6 wheeled, AI powered vehicle named Pragyan, which translates to wisdom in Sanskrit.
The aim is to help us understand the moon better and to map the location and lunar water via Pragyan. It was first of its kind in many ways:
· 1st space mission to conduct a soft landing on the moon’s South Polar Region
· 1st Indian expedition to attempt a soft landing on the lunar surface with home- grown technology
· 1st Indian mission to explore the lunar terrain with home grown technology.
This mission was launched at its course to the moon from the second launch pad at Satish Dhawan Space Center on July 22, 2019 at 2:43 p.m. by Geosynchronous Satellite launch. It reached the moon’s orbit on 20 August 2019 and began orbital positioning plots for the Landing of Vikram Lander. Vikram and the rover which were programmed to land, in the South Polar Region on 6 September 2019, deviated at 2.1 kms and lost communication. Efforts to re-establish the link has been going on since then. The lander is designed to complete a soft-landing on the lunar surface, and rover has a mission life of one lunar day, which is equivalent to 14 earth days. With only a week to revive Vikram Lander, confidence is waning.
Over the next few years, the orbiter will continue to revolve around the moon to study about the Lunar Surface and atmosphere. It also will perform to estimate the quantity of the iced water present in South region of the moon.
Team behind the successful mission:
Muthayya Vanitha – Project Director
Ritu Karidhal – Mission Director
Dr.K.Sivan – ISRO Chairman
P. Kunhikrishnan – Director of UR Rao Satellite Center, ISRO
Dr.S.Somanath- VSSC Director
Dr.Anil Bharadwaj- Director, Physical Research, Lab
J. Jayaprakash- Mission Director of the Launch
Raghunathan Pillai- Vehicle Director
There are no failures in science, only experiments and efforts.
-Prime Minister Narendra Modi