A day after announcing that much-awaited lunar mission Chandrayaan-2 will be launched on July 15, 2019, Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) chief K Sivan said on Thursday said that India is planning to launch its own space station.
"We have to sustain the Gaganyaan programme after the launch of (the) human space mission. In this context, India is planning to have its own space station," Sivan told reporters in the national capital.
The ambitious project will be an extension of the Gaganyaan mission.
Meanwhile, Union Minister of State for Atomic Energy and Space, Dr Jitendra Singh said that Chandrayaan-2, to be launched on July 15, 2019 tentatively, will land in September.
"Chandrayaan-2 to be launched on July 15, 2019 tentatively, it will land in September, it will carry a rover. It will be an extension of Chandrayaan-1," Singh said.
Chandrayaan-2 will be launched from the Satish Dhawan Space Center in Sriharikota at about 2:15 am on July 15, 2019 and the space agency would look at the landing (rover) on the surface of the Moon on September 6 or September 7.
Addressing the media from Bengaluru, ISRO Chairman Dr K Sivan said, "ISRO has firmed up that Chandrayaan 2 Mission will be launched on July 15 early morning at 2 hours 51 minutes".
"The day we are going to land is either September 6 or September 7, that day happens to be the beginning of a lunar day. For one full lunar day, the lander and rover will be functioning and carry out scientific experiments," Sivan added.
Taking about the technicalities of Chandrayaan 2, the ISRO chief further said the mission consists of three components and the composit body of the system is kept inside GSLV MK-III. The total mass of Chandrayaan 2 mission is 3.8 ton. Out of 3.8 ton, nearly 1.3 ton is the propeller.
If all goes well, India would be the fourth country after the US, Russia and China to perform a soft landing on the moon and put a rover on it.
The Orbiter will be orbiting around the moon in 100 km orbit, Sivan said.
Chandrayaan 2 will also have the credit of being India's first interplanetary mission to be steered by two women- with M Vanitha as Project Director and Ritu Karidhal as Mission Director.
Chandrayaan will carry 13 Indian payloads (8 on orbiter, 3 on lander and 2 on rover) and one passive experiment from NASA.
The mission cost of Chandrayaan-2 with regard to the satellite was Rs 603 crore, Sivan noted. The cost of GSLV MK III is Rs 375 crore.
With PTI Inputs