Chandrayaan2: Not failed, But The First Step for Giant Leap.

Some facts about Chandrayaan2

Chandrayaan 2 is an (ISRO) Indian Space Research Organization mission that consists of a soft lander which carries a rover, an orbiter and it was scheduled to launch to the moon on July 2019. The objective of chandrayaan 2 is to report the ability to soft-land on the surface of lunar. It also can operate a robotic rover on the surface. The scientific aim is to study the elemental abundance, lunar exosphere, mineralogy, lunar topography, and signature of water ice and hydroxyl.

Spacecraft and subsystems

Chandrayaan 2 orbiter looks like box-shaped craft with an orbital mass of 2739 kg. It also consists of solar arrays that are capable of generating 1000 watt power. The orbiter communicates with the lander and the Indian Deep Space Network. It has a scientific payload that has a visible terrain camera, synthetic aperture radar, neutral mass spectrometer, radio occultation experiment, solar X-ray monitor, near-infrared spectrometer, solar x-ray monitor.

The lander is known as Vikram, which has a mass of 1471 kg that includes the rover. It can generate 650 watts of solar power. The lander can directly communicate with the Deep Space Network, the rover, and the orbiter. Lander will carry a camera, thermal profiler, Langmuir Probe and seismometer and also a NASA- supplied laser reflector.

The rover is called as Pragyan, which is a 6-wheeled vehicle. It has a mass of 27 kg that runs on 50 watts of solar power. The rover can travel up to 500 m at a speed of 1 cm per second. The rover communicates with the lander. It holds a camera, laser-induced ablation, spectroscopy experiment, and alpha-proton x-ray spectrometer.

Mission Profile

The launching date of chandrayaan 2 was 22 July at 2.43 p.m. Indian Standard Time from Satish Dhawan Space center on Sriharikota Island on Geosynchronous satellite launch vehicle mark III. The lander –orbiter pair went into an elliptical Earth parking orbit. After that, it was followed by trans-lunar injection on 14 August. The pair then entered into the lunar polar orbit. The lander and orbiter got separated on two September. The orbiter will be evolving into a 100 km altitude Earth parking orbit. Vikram lander maneuvered into 30* 100 km orbit. The plan is to land on the surface in the high latitude part of the south pole between two craters named Simpelius N and Manzinus C on the seven September between 2.30 p.m. Indian local time. The contact was lost at an altitude of 2.1 km, and the data is being analyzed. The Orbiter part of the mission is planned from last year. The rover was to be deployed after landing. The lander and rover portions were scheduled for 14-15 days, one period of lunar in daylight.

The cost of the mission chandrayaan two as of June 2019 has been allotted 978 crore, which is approximately US$141 million. It also includes Rs 603 crore for space segment, and the launch cost on GSLV Mk III is Rs 373 crore. Initially, the chandrayaan-2 stack was put in an earth parking orbit of 170 Km of perigee (near the earth) and 40,400 km apogee (far from the land) by the launch vehicle.

On comparing with Apollo mission of NASA

Apollo mission program of NASA resulted in American astronauts making a total number to 11 space flights and walking on the moon

Apollo mission was a capsule with room for three astronauts. The astronauts rode in the command module to the moon. Two types of rockets were used for NASA’S Apollo mission. The first flights used the smaller Saturn I B missile. The rocket had two stages. The other plane used the Saturn V rocket, which was three stages.

The first moon landing took place on 20 July 1969 on the Apollo mission. The crew was Neil Armstrong, Buzz Aldrin, and Michael Collins. Neil Armstrong was the first person who walked on the lunar surface. Neil Armstrong said, that one small step for a man; one giant leap for humanity. The cost of the Apollo mission was 2540 crore USD

Conclusion

Chandrayaan 2 mission lander Vikram lost all the communication with the ground station when it was just 2.1 km above the lunar surface. The lander could not control the velocity and failed a soft landing on the moon. The orbiter continues to revolve around the moon at an altitude of 100 km above the surface. It would extend chandrayaan-2 exploration. Chandrayaan 2 is not failed mission, it is a first step for Gaint leap in a space mission.

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