The Indian Space Research Organisation has just confirmed that the space agency is looking to launch its ambitious Chandrayaan-2 mission between July 9 and July 16, and while this will be the second mission to the Moon from India, the Chandrayaan-2 is likely to launch on the natural satellite by September 6.
The spacecraft will carry an orbiter, a rover named Pragyan and a lander named Vikram. Chandrayaan-2 will be making an attempt at landing a lander and the moon rover in a high plain situated between two craters called as Manzinus C and Simpelius N. The location has a latitude of about 70-degrees south and if the Chandrayaan-2 mission is successful, it will become the second mission ever to land a rover near the lunar south pole.
On the other hand, the Pragyan rover and Vikram lander will be placed as an integrated module in the Chandrayaan-2 spacecraft onboard the GSLV MK-III launch vehicle. While the rover will be housed inside the lander, the mission will be launched between July 9 and July 16, 2019. Moreover, the integrated module will reach the moon’s orbit with the help of an orbiter propulsion module. ISRO further added that the journey from Earth to the moon will take around 45 to 50 days.
After the Chandrayaan-2 reaches the lunar orbit, the lander named Vikram will separate from Pragyan rover to soft land on the dark side of the moon at its South Pole. Not many countries have explored the south side of the moon and China was the only country to do so in January by landing the Chang’e 4 spacecraft.
India first moon mission was named as Chandrayaan-1 and it only involved an orbiter which was launched on October 22, 2008. The spacecraft operated for 312 days while it was intended to operate for 2 years. The Chandrayaan-1 made over 3,400 orbits around the moon and took hundreds of images of the natural satellite for ISRO while also achieving 95 per cent of its planned objectives.