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    Showing posts with label ISRO. Show all posts

    ISRO Mars mission: Our baby is in space looking for objects, scientists enthuse

    Scientists involved in the project say they have a long way to go as the orbit of the spacecraft has to be raised.


    It was moment of triumph for scientists closely involved in the Mars Orbiter Mission. For KS Shivkumar, director of the Isro Satellite Centre where the spacecraft was built, the placing of the Mars Orbiter spacecraft into the orbit around the Earth was like his baby taking its first steps.

    “Our baby is up in space looking for scientific objects but we have a long way to go,” he said.

    He said that the spacecraft was realised in a record 15 months. The project team has undertaken all contingency measures to ensure that the spacecraft can take decisions on its own in the event of any issue. He said full scale autonomy has been built into the spacecraft which would take decisions on its own and put it on safe mode without a ground intervention.  Developing such a system is a real challenge, he added.

    According to AS Kiran Kumar,  director of the Space Applications Centre (SAC), Ahmedabad,   the real challenge lies ahead. “We will have to raise the orbit from 23,000 km to 40,000 km and then to 2 lakh km. Then in the early hours of December 1, the crucial trans-Mars injection would be carried out to enable the spacecraft to undertake its 300 day journey to the red planet,” he said.

    Mission director P Kunhikrishnan said, “With the precise injection of the spacecraft in the desired initial orbit, the crucial part of the mission for its long journey to Mars has been achieved. It is the 25th mission of the PSLV rocket.”

    Professor Yashpal, founding father of ISRO, lauded India’s effort to chart its own path by launching the mission and not following others. “There are a whole lot of programmes going on in the Isro and the best part is that you are making your own path and not following anyone else’s,” he said.

    Professor UR Rao, who had conducted the feasibility study of the Mars mission, said: “It is indeed a great day for India as something that has gone out of our own cradle. I can proudly say India has become mature. I hope we get very good results.” He added, “I was talking to some scientist friends in the US and they told me why Indians are shouting about Rs.500 crore spent on the mission, it

    India to launch mission to explore Mars on Nov 5

    India's ambitious space mission to explore planet Mars would be launched on November 5 from the spaceport of Sriharikota, ISRO announced on Tuesday.

    The Mars Orbiter Mission (MOM), 'Mangalyan', would be launched onboard PSLV C25 on November 5 at 3:28pm from the first launch pad of Satish Dhawan Space Centre at Sriharikota, some 80 kilometres from Chennai, an ISRO spokesperson said.

    A decision on the launch date was to be taken on October 19 but postponed to Tuesday in view of bad weather in the South Pacific Ocean.

    The powerful XL version of the Indian Space Research Organisation's workhorse Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (PSLV) would be used for the Rs. 450 crore mission.

    Primary objectives of the mission are to demonstrate India's technological capability to send a satellite to orbit around Mars and conduct meaningful experiments such as looking for signs of life, take pictures of the red planet and study Martian environment.

    Launch campaign has already commenced in Sriharikota from where the 1,350-kg MOM spacecraft is slated to be launched by the Rs. 110 crore Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle.

    The satellite will carry compact science experiment instruments, totalling a mass of 15 kilograms. There will be five instruments to study Martian surface, atmosphere and mineralogy, ISRO said.

    After leaving the earth's orbit, the spacecraft will cruise in deep space for about ten months using its own propulsion system and will reach Martian transfer trajectory in September 2014.

    The spacecraft subsequently is planned to enter into a 372 kilometres by 80,000 kilometres elliptical orbit around Mars.

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