What 'Missile Man of India' APJ Abdul Kalam predicted about 'Chandrayaan'

Delhi, News Nation Bureau | Updated : 23 July 2019, 08:09 AM
The Chandrayaan-2, India's second Moon mission after Chandrayaan-1, will be deployed on the far side of the lunar surface.
The Chandrayaan-2, India's second Moon mission after Chandrayaan-1, will be deployed on the far side of the lunar surface.

APJ Abdul Kalam, former President also known as the ‘Missile Man of India’, had predicted the future of Chandrayaan way back in 2009. Addressing an event in Mumbai, Kalam had said that, “I suggested to both ISRO and NASA to work on future mission of Chandrayaan-II using moon surface robotic penetrator during my recent visit to California Institute of Technology in US, where NASA scientists presented the findings of Moon Mineralogy Mapper (M3) to Indian scientists.” He had prophetically predicted that, “The exploration of the moon through Chandrayaan will electrify the entire country, particularly young scientists and children. I am sure the moon mission is just a start towards further planetary explorations.”

The July 22 date was finalised after the July 15’s aborted launch. Scientists were keen on launching the Chandrayaan-2 as early as possible. After much deliberations, the July 22 date was fixed. Chandrayaan-2 was halted after the technicians working on the lunar mission detected leak  in the GSLV-MkIII rocket's helium fuel component.

The launch of Chandrayaan-2 onboard GSLVMkIII-M1 was aborted on July 15 less than an hour before take-off by the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) due to technical snag. The Chandrayaan-2, India's second Moon mission after Chandrayaan-1, will be deployed on the far side of the lunar surface.

On July 15, the launch was stopped 56 minutes and 24 seconds before take-off at 1.55 am following the announcement from the Mission Control Centre.

Confusion prevailed for several minutes before ISRO came out with an official confirmation about the launch being cancelled. President Ram Nath Kovind was present at the space port for the mission.

In a statement, ISRO Associate Director (Public Relations), B R Guruprasad said, "A technical snag was observed in the launch vehicle system at t-minus 56 minutes. As a measure of abundant precaution Chandrayaan 2 launch has been called off for today." "Revised launch date will be announced later," he added.

The historic Chandrayaan-2 mission was supposed target a completely unexplored section of the Moon that is, its “South Polar region - Aitken Basin”. By conducting topographical studies and mineralogical analyses alongside a few other experiments on the Moon’s Surface, the ISRO’s ambitious mission aimed to get a better understanding of the Moon’s origin and its evolution.

The mission was being considered as a challenge since no space agency has ever explored the South Polar Region of the Moon. Importantly, Chandrayaan-1 made more than 3,400 orbits around the moon and was operational for 312 days till August 29, 2009.

Chandrayaan-2 has three elements including the Rover, the Lander and the Orbiter. As soon as the spacecraft will land on the moon, the lander will separate from the Orbiter and then perform a series of complex manoeuvres comprising of tough braking and fine braking. The lander, named Vikram, will land near the Moon’s South Pole and then it will then carry out experiments on Lunar surface for 1 Lunar day. A single lunar day is equal to 14 Earth days. However. Orbiter will continue its mission for a duration of one year.

First Published: Monday, July 22, 2019 03:03 PM
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