Updated: September 6, 2019 1:09:42 pm
Chandrayaan 2 is expected to land on the surface of the moon on September 7. And the historic moment will be even more special for 60 students who will be witnessing it with Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
The students from classes 8 to 10 were selected through an online space quiz conducted by the team of Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) to increase awareness.
For other kids too, this will be a good opportunity to get them interested in space and discuss interesting facts about Chandrayaan 2. This will also help them stay updated with current affairs and encourage them to explore more about the phenomenon.
Dr Mila Mitra, Co-Founder and Chief Scientific Officer, STEM & Space, told Express Parenting, “It’s an exciting time to be a kid in India when Chandrayaan 2 is about to make history as the first mission to reach the moon’s South pole, and only the fourth country to ever land on the moon! Parents can share with their kids the lofty objectives of the mission. Kids can find out about the orbiter, the lander that will make a soft touchdown and a little rover that will again make history as a working rover on the moon. All parents are encouraged to watch this technically challenging soft landing on the moon on September 7, at 1:30 am with their kids and cheer for ISRO as they make history, and as India earns its name as a space superpower.”
Here are some facts to share with kids:
What is Chandrayaan 2?
Chandrayaan 2 is the country’s second lunar mission after Chandrayaan 1, making India the fourth country to soft-land on the moon after US Russia and China. It will be India’s first soft landing on the surface of the moon and also the first spacecraft to land near the moon’s South Pole, if successful.
Chandrayaan 2 has an Orbiter to go around the Moon for a year in an orbit of 100 km from the surface, a Lander (Vikram), a spacecraft designed to land on the surface of the moon, and a Rover (Pragyan), a space exploration vehicle designed to move across the surface of the moon.
Why the South Pole?
According to ISRO, the lunar surface area that remains in shadow is much larger at the South Pole than at the North Pole. According to former NASA astronaut Donald A Thomas, there could be ice in some of the craters that are permanently shadowed. From ice we can get water and from that oxygen and hydrogen.
When was Chandrayaan 2 launched?
Chandrayaan 2, weighing 3447 kg, was launched on July 22, 2019, at 2:43pm, on the back of GSLV Mk-III rocket, from the Satish Dhawan Space Centre at Sriharikota.
On August 14. 2019, Chandrayaan 2 left the Earth’s orbit and began its journey towards the Moon. It entered the lunar orbit sucessfully on August 20, 2019 through Lunar Orbit Insertion (LOI) manoeuvre.
After the fifth and final Lunar-bound orbit manoeuvre on September 1, 2019, the Lander separated from the orbiter and carried out two de-orbiting manoeuvres before descending to the moon.
Chandrayaan 2 has approximately covered a distance of 3,84,000 km on a pre-defined path.
When will Chandrayaan 2 land on Moon?
Chandrayaan 2 is expected to soft land on the moon on September 7, 2019. The Lander is scheduled to begin its descent to the surface of the moon between 1-2 am and will touch down at 1:30-2:30 am. The Lander will be fitted with three cameras which will help in soft landing. It would travel at about six km per second. It will then reduce the speed to two metres per second or lower to ensure safe landing.
After three hours of landing, the rover or the six-wheeled robotic vehicle called Pragyan would come out of the lander and slope down to the moon’s surface to collect data. It will crawl at a speed of 1 cm per second. The lander and rover are designed to operate for 14 days.
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