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Here Is All You Should Know About Mission Chandrayaan-2 – Indian Ambition, Universal Aspiration

Chandrayaan 2 is on a mission unlike any before. Leveraging nearly a decade of scientific research and engineering development, India’s second lunar expedition will shed light on a completely unexplored section of the Moon — its South Polar region. This mission will help us gain a better understanding of the origin and evolution of the Moon by conducting detailed topographical studies, comprehensive mineralogical analyses, and a host of other experiments on the lunar surface. While there, we will also explore discoveries made by Chandrayaan 1, such as the presence of water molecules on the Moon and new rock types with unique chemical composition. 

Chandrayaan – 2 launch scheduled on 15th July, 2019 at 2:51hrs was called off due to a technical snag noticed at around one hour before launch. The launch is now rescheduled on July 22, 2019 at 14:43 hrs IST from Satish Dhawan Space Center at Sriharikota on-board GSLV Mk-III. It will be injected into an earth parking 170 x 39120 km orbit. A series of maneuvers will be carried out to raise its orbit and put Chandrayaan-2 on Lunar Transfer Trajectory. On entering Moon’s sphere of influence, on-board thrusters will slow down the spacecraft for Lunar Capture. The Orbit of Chandrayaan-2 around the moon will be circularized to 100×100 km orbit through a series of orbital maneuvers. On the day of landing, the lander will separate from the Orbiter and then perform a series of complex maneuvers comprising of rough braking and fine braking. Imaging of the landing site region prior to landing will be done for finding safe and hazard-free zones. The lander-Vikram will finally land near South Pole of the moon on Sep 7, 2019. Subsequently, Rover will roll out and carry out experiments on Lunar surface for a period of 1 Lunar day which is equal to 14 Earth days. The orbiter will continue its mission for a duration of one year.

Science experiments

Chandrayaan-2 has several science payloads to expand the lunar scientific knowledge through detailed study of topography, seismography, mineral identification and distribution, surface chemical composition, thermo-physical characteristics of top soil and composition of the tenuous lunar atmosphere, leading to a new understanding of the origin and evolution of the Moon.

The Orbiter payloads will conduct remote-sensing observations from a 100 km orbit while the Lander and Rover payloads will perform in-situ measurements near the landing site.

For understanding of the Lunar composition, it is planned to identify the elements and mapping its distribution on the lunar surface both at global and In-situ level. In addition detailed 3 dimensional mapping of the lunar regolith will be done. Measurements on the near surface plasma environment and electron density in the Lunar ionosphere will be studied. Thermo-physical property of the lunar surface and seismic activities will also be measured. Water molecule distribution will be studied using infra red spectroscopy, synthetic aperture radiometry & polarimetry as well as mass spectroscopy techniques.

Geosynchronous Satellite Launch Vehicle Mark-III (GSLV Mk-III)

The GSLV Mk-III will carry Chandrayaan 2 to its designated orbit. This three-stage vehicle is India’s most powerful launcher to date, and is capable of launching 4-ton class of satellites to the Geosynchronous Transfer Orbit (GTO).

Its components are:

S200 solid rocket boosters

L110 liquid stage

C25 upper stage

A legacy of Chandrayaan 1

15th August, 2003: Chandrayaan programme is announced by Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee

22nd October, 2008: Chandrayaan 1 takes off from the Satish Dhawan Space Centre at Sriharikota

8th November, 2008: Chandrayaan 1 enters a Lunar Transfer Trajectory

14th November, 2008: The Moon Impact Probe ejects from Chandrayaan 1 and crashes near the lunar South Pole — confirms presence of water molecules on Moon’s surface

28th August, 2009: End of Chandrayaan 1 programme

By TIS Staffer
the authorBy TIS Staffer

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