Bengaluru: Chandrayaan-2, will be launched on July 15, Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) Chairman K Sivan announces. Chandrayaan-2 is India’s second mission to the Moon. The lunar spacecraft Chandrayaan-2 is scheduled for lift-off at 02.51 hours from the Satish Dhawan Space Centre at Sriharikota in Andhra Pradesh.
The mission includes a lander and rover for the first time in an Indian space mission. The moon landing is planned for September 6 or 7. The spacecraft, with a mass of 3.8 tonne, has three modules — Orbiter, Lander (Vikram) and Rover (Pragyan).
The mission costs Rs 603 crore for the spacecraft system and Rs 375 crore for the launcher, a GSLV-MKIII. The lander and the rover will have the tricolour painted on them. The Asoka chakra will be imprinted on the wheels of the rover. According to the ISRO, Orbiter, with scientific payloads, would orbit around the moon. The Lander would soft land on the moon at a predetermined site and deploy Rover.
The scientific payloads on board Orbiter, Lander and Rover are expected to perform mineralogical and elemental studies of the lunar surface. The Orbiter and Lander modules would be interfaced mechanically and stacked together as an integrated module and accommodated inside the GSLV MK-III launch vehicle. Rover is housed inside Lander.
After the launch into an earth-bound orbit by GSLV MK-III, the integrated module would reach the moon orbit using the orbiter propulsion module and subsequently, Lander would separate from Orbiter and soft land at the predetermined site, close to lunar South Pole, the ISRO said.