India Successfully Launches Chandrayaan-2, Aims to Become First to Probe Lunar South Pole The ISRO is aiming for a soft landing of the lander in the South Pole region of the moon where no country has gone so far.
Sriharikota: India on Monday successfully launched its second moon mission Chandrayaan-2 from its most powerful rocket with a plan to land the rover on September 7 in the unexplored lunar south pole, exactly a week after the liftoff was aborted due to a technical snag. Carrying a "billion dreams" in a giant leap for the country's ambitious low-cost space programme, the most complex and prestigious mission ever undertaken by the Indian Space Research Organisation(ISRO), if successful, will also make India the fourth country after Russia, the US and China to pull off a soft landing on the moon.
"We bounced back with flying colours after the earlier technical snag. Success is coming after a call-off," said a beaming and visibly relieved ISRO Chairman K Sivan at the mission control room of the Satish Dhawan Space Centre in Sriharikota, about 100 km from Chennai, as scientists broke into cheers, shook hands and exchanged greetings. Sivan, who announced the success of the mission, was addressing the scientists shortly after the towering geosynchronous satellite launch vehicle GSLV-MkIII-M1, dubbed as 'Baahubali', lifted-off from the second launchpad at the spaceport into cloudy skies at 2.43 pm and successfully placed the 3,850-kg Chandrayaan-2 into the earth orbit about 16 minutes later. The Rs 978-crore unmanned mission also brought woman power to the fore as it was helmed by two woman scientists of the ISRO--Ritu Karidhal and M Vanitha, the Mission and Project directors respectively.
Joined by President Ram Nath Kovind and leaders across the political spectrum, Prime Minister Narendra Modi congratulated the scientists and said every Indian is immensely proud today. In a series of tweets, Modi referred to the indigenous systems used in Chandrayaan-2 and said the mission is "Indian at heart, Indian in spirit!... "Efforts such as Chandrayaan-2 will further encourage our bright youngsters towards science, top quality research and innovation." The prime minister also shared pictures of him watching the launch on a large screen and shared his audio message to the ISRO. "Chandrayaan-2 is unique because it will explore and perform studies on the south pole region of lunar terrain which is not explored and sampled by any past mission. This mission will offer new knowledge about the moon," Modi said. The ISRO is aiming for a soft landing of the lander in the South Pole region of the moon where no country has gone so far.
i"After that the D-Day will come and on that day we are going to experience 15 minutes of terror, to ensure the landing is safe near the South Pole," he added. "Chandrayaan 2 is ready to take a billion dreams to the moon now stronger than ever before! Join us for the launch on Monday 22 July, 2019 at 2:43 PM IST," ISRO tweeted on July 18 while announcing the rescheduled launch.