Updated: September 10, 2020 11:28:47 am
Chandrayaan-3’s launch has been delayed due to the Covid-19 pandemic and it will be launched early next year instead of the second half of 2020. The announcement was made by Union Minister Jitendra Singh on Sunday where he revealed that the mission to Moon will not include an orbiter like the Chandrayaan-2. But, it will include a rover and a lander.
Chandrayaan-2’s Vikram Lander crashed last year and its debris was found later on by NASA. Following the unsuccessful landing on Moon’s south pole, the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) had said that it has plans to launch another mission to the Moon in 2020.
Recently, data from the ISRO suggested that Moon might be rusting. In the study, it is mentioned that the moon is turning slightly red, which indicates that there is a formation of a reddish-black mineral form of iron named hematite on its surface, especially at the poles.
Jitendra Singh, Minister of State (MoS) for the Department of Space said Chandrayaan-1 which was launched in 2008 has transmitted images suggesting Moon may be rusting.
“The sign of this finding is that even though the surface of the Moon is known to have iron-rich rocks, it is not known for the presence of water and oxygen, which are the two elements needed to interact with iron to create rust,” Singh said.
On the other hand, NASA’s JPL scientists Abigail Fraeman and Vivian Sun were surprised by the findings of Chandrayaan-1 “very puzzling”. They added: “At first, I totally didn’t believe it. It shouldn’t exist based on the conditions present on the Moon,” Fraeman said. “But since we discovered water on the Moon, people have been speculating that there could be a greater variety of minerals than we realize if that water had reacted with rocks.”
Also, the training processes and other procedures for India’s first-ever Human Space mission Gaganyaan despite the situation created by the pandemic.
Singh said, “Constraints due to the COVID pandemic led to some disruptions in the plan for Gaganyaan but efforts are going on to stick to the timeline of around 2022.”
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