Chandrayaan 2 to be launched on July 22 at 2.43pm

Clay Curtis
July 19, 2019

The mission was scheduled for launch in the wee hours on Monday, but was called off due to a "technical snag". There were four suitable window periods for the launch of Chandrayaan-2 in July - July 15, July 16, July 29 and July 30.

"Couple of dates are being looked at for the rocket's launch".

Chandrayaan-2 moon mission will launch at 5:13 a.m. EDT (0913 GMT) on Monday from the agency's Satish Dhawan Space Center on the island of Sriharikota about 50 miles (80 kilometers) north of Chennai.

No changes in path were suggested by the committee and Chandrayaan 2 will be injected in a 170 x 40,400km elliptical orbit around the Earth. That took time, and the mission was finally ready by 2017.

It all started when the Russian Federal Space Agency (Roscosmos) and ISRO signed an agreement for the two agencies to work together on the Chandrayaan-2 project. It is about three times more than the Chandrayaan-1 mission (1380 kg). Later, its date was extended to January 3 and again to 31st January.

The reason for the odd timing of 2.51 am and the date (July 15) was to ensure precision entry into the lunar orbit.

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According to the original schedule, Chandrayaan-2 was to take 54 days to reach the moon.

Critics have questioned the expense of the mission in the 1.3-billion-person country plagued by widespread poverty and high child mortality rates. The orbit will be raised till it enters the moon's sphere of influence.

It will also be the first time, that India would attempt a "soft landing" on the south pole of the moon. The only thing that will change is the number of days the spacecraft goes around Moon before lander separation.

A soft landing would make India only the fourth country to do so after the US, Russia and China.

It will carry an orbiter, lander and a rover which has been nearly entirely designed and made in India. The orbiter will map the surface of the moon so that the existence and development of the moon can be traced. The solar-powered Vikram lander and Pragyan rover will spend about one lunar day (the equivalent of 14 Earth days) studying the moon's surface up close.

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