Chandrayaan-2 LIVE: After almost 30 days of traveling in space, Chandrayaan-2 reached the lunar orbit today in a important milestone for India’s Moon Mission. ISRO said in a declaration, “Today (August 20, 2019) Lunar Orbit Insertion (LOI) maneuver was effectively finished at 0902 hrs IST as scheduled using the onboard propulsion system. The maneuvering length was 1738 seconds. This effectively inserted Chandrayaan-2 into a Lunar orbit. The successful orbit is 114 kmx 18072 km.
ISRO Chairman K Sivan, speaking to the media, said the task had reached a milestone. “The Chandrayaan-2 task today crossed a significant milestone, the accurate lunar orbit insertion maneuver took place at 9 a.m. for about 30 minutes, and Chandrayaan 2 was exactly inserted into the specified orbit,” he said.
ISRO President K Sivan called the step “challenging” on Monday. This was one of the mission’s most tricky activities because if the satellite approached the Moon at a velocity higher than expected it would bounce off it and get lost in deep space. But if it moved at a slow speed, the gravity of the Moon would take the Chandrayaan-2 and it could crash into the ground.
There will then be another four orbit maneuvers to get the spacecraft into its final orbit passing over the lunar poles at a distance of about 100 km from the surface of Moon, ISRO said.
According to the space agency headquartered in Bengaluru, the Vikram lander will then separate from the orbiter on September 2.
Before the initiation of powered descent to create a smooth landing on the lunar surface on September 7, ISRO said, two orbit maneuvers will be conducted on the lander.
Chandrayaan-2, launched by GSLV MkIII-M1 on July 22, entered the Lunar Transfer Trajectory on August 14 following the successful completion of the spacecraft’s final orbit raising maneuver.
The spacecraft’s health is continually tracked at ISRO Telemetry, Tracking and Command Network (ISTRAC) in Bengaluru from the Mission Operations Complex (MOX) with assistance from antennas at Byalalu near Bengaluru.
All systems on board spacecraft Chandrayaan-2 are performing normally, ISRO said on August 14. Chandrayaan-2 — India’s second lunar expedition — sheds light on a totally unexplored Moon area, its South Pole, according to ISRO.
“This task will help us achieve a better knowledge of the Moon’s origin and evolution through thorough topographical research, extensive mineralogical analyzes, and a host of other lunar surface experiments,” the space agency said.
“While there, we’re also going to investigate Chandrayaan-1 findings such as the existence of water molecules on the Moon and fresh kinds of rock with distinctive chemical composition,” she said.
India’s most ambitious space mission to date, on July 22 at Sriharikota in Andhra Pradesh, Chandrayaan 2 had taken off India’s spaceport. In its second effort, the lift-off was effective a week after being aborted just under an hour after its launch owing to a technical failure. Due to its small cost, the task stands out with just about Rs. 1,000 crore invested— a much lower price tag compared to other countries ‘ comparable missions.
If successful, after Russia, the US and China, the mission will make India the fourth country to softly land a rover on the lunar surface. In its sooner this year, the last country to try a smooth landing on the Moon, Israel, failed.
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