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Will India Regain Link With Vikram Lander? The Good News Is That ISRO Is Just Not Ready To Give Up Yet

The ISRO has not given up efforts to revive Vikram Lander  lying on the lunar surface after it had a hard landing 3 weeks  ago.

Minutes before Vikram Lander’s landing seven ground stations lost connection with it, since then the Bengaluru-headquartered space agency had been making efforts to establish link with the lander. But, ultimately stopped 10 days ago.

ISRO Chairman K Sivan said “Now it’s not possible, it’s night time there. May be after this, probably we will start. It’s night time at our landing site, power may not be there”

The highly complex mission  Chandrayaan-2  was to explore the unexplored side of the moon.

It is said  that it is hard to regain link with the lander now and may also have to worry about the cold conditions.

An ISRO official said “I think finding link after so many days is going to be extremely difficult but there is nothing wrong in trying,” And speaking on whether the lander can withstand cold weather conditions he  said “Not only cold, impact shock is something one has to worry about; the lander has come down at a high speed the shock generated can damage many things inside, that way it’s highly doubtful. Communication antenna which orientation… where it’s looking… that way it’s extremely difficult to establish contact”, he said.

But, ISRO Chairman K Sivan  says that the orbiter is  fine.  The orbiter has already been placed in its intended orbit around the Moon and shall enrich our understanding of the moon’s evolution and mapping of the minerals and water molecules in the Polar Regions.

It is said that the orbiter camera is the highest resolution camera in any lunar mission so far and shall provide high resolution images which will be immensely useful to the global scientific community.

The ISRO said “The precise launch and mission management has ensured a long life of almost seven years instead of the planned one year”

Following its launch on July 22, Chandrayaan-2 spent the last several weeks inching its way to the moon, ultimately entering lunar orbit on August 20. On September 2, Vikram separated from the mission’s orbiter, and the newly freed lander began a series of braking maneuvers to lower its orbit and ready itself for landing.

Vikram’s flight was a risky endeavor, requiring the lander to slow itself down to a near standstill, autonomously scan for surface obstacles, and then take steps to avoid them during touchdown. The majority of attempts to land robots on the moon have ended in failure, either during launch or on the way to the surface.

The ISRO had constituted a national level committee consisting of academics and agency experts to analyse the cause of the communication loss with the lander.

In addition to setting a global first, a successful landing would have made India just the fourth country to touch down anywhere on the lunar surface, and only the third nation to operate a robotic rover there. Nevertheless, the Chandrayaan-2 mission’s orbiter remains safely in lunar orbit, with a year-long scientific mission ahead of it.

However, ISRO next plans to send astronauts to space by 2022,an Orbiter mission to Mars between 2022 and 2023 and another mission to Moon Chandrayaan-3 in late 2020s also Venus mission in 2023 Mission for Sun and will build a space station.

Sharanya Alva

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