Tilted hopes: Chandrayan 2- Vikram lander found in one piece and unbroken but it lays tilted on Moon.
The moon is the closest cosmic body and is a natural satellite of the earth. Study on evolution of the moon will help to understand the history of the solar system and earth. Several missions have been conducted for the same purpose. India is not behind. India is the fourth country to launch Chandrayan 1 in 2008 followed by Chandrayan 2.
Chandrayan 2, a follow-up mission: Vikram lander is not broken, as per the images sent by the on-board camera of the orbiter, Vikram had a hard landing very close to the planned landing site. Efforts are being made to reestablish communication with the module. Though the lander is intact, it is tilted in position. One of the major reasons for the “hard landing” of Vikram could be the loss of control during the final moments of the touchdown, due to malfunctioning of one of the five thrusters that were fired to slow down Vikram from a speed of 6000 km/h to zero. This could have destabilized the vehicle causing it to fall on the moon’s surface. The scientist raising concerns that the communication equipment could have been damaged. It is huge task to activate the power controls.
The Indian Space Research Organization had lost contact with lander Vikram on September 7 as it was just 2.1 km above the lunar surface, trying to soft land on the unexplored South Pole of the moon. The module is carrying rover Pragyan and three scientific instruments, meant to study the soil composition, atmosphere, seismic activity and other aspects of the environment.
ISRO chief K Sivan had said that the space agency would try to restore link with lander in 14 days. The mission life if the lander and rover is one lunar day which is equal to 14 days in earth. Since it was hard landing the chances are bleak that the communication will be restored. Only if it had soft landed and if all the systems are functional, then only communication can be restored.
But another ISRO official said that generating power Is not an issue for the lander as it has solar panels all around it and also has internal batteries which have not been used much. Spacecraft in the geostationary orbit have been recovered but that flexibility is not there with Vikram. Already it is lying in the surface of the moon and cannot be reoriented. What can be done is antennas will have to be pointed towards ground station or orbiter. Though the operation is difficult, chances are good.
Let’s visit Chandrayan-1: Chandrayan -1 was the first mission in 2008, launched by Indian Space Research Organization. The mission was a major boost to India’s space program as India researched and developed its own technology in order to explore the moon. Over a two-year period, it was intended to survey the lunar surface, chemical characteristics. The Polar Regions are of special interest as they might contain ice. Chandrayan operated for 312 days as opposed to intended two years, but the mission was achieved 95% of planned objectives.