Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) chairperson Dr K Sivan announced on Wednesday that Chandrayaan 2, India’s mission to the Moon, will be launched on July 15 at 2.51 pm. The space shuttle will explore the southern part of the moon making India the first country to do so. It will carry 13 scientific satellites and will weigh about 3.8 tonnes, Sivan said.
Chandrayaan 2 is India’s second lunar mission with three modules: the Orbiter, Lander (Vikram) and Rover (Pragyan). The Orbiter and Lander will be mechanically interfaced and stacked together as an integrated module inside the launch vehicle, GSLV MK-III.
After being launched into earth-bound orbit, the module will use orbiter propulsion module to reach the Moon orbit. The Lander will separate from the Orbiter and soft land at the predetermined site close to Moon’s South pole. The Rover, which is housed inside the Lander, will carry out scientific experiments on the surface of the moon. Lander and Orbiter too are mounted with instruments to help carry out experiments.
On June 8, the space organisation announced that the CE-20 engine, meant for the upper stage of GSLV MK-III was successfully launched. The engine may be used in GSLV MK-III launch vehicle for the Gaganyaan Mission.
This mission is being touted as the most complex one ever undertaken by ISRO.