Final countdown for Chandrayaan begins

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Chennai, Oct 20 (UNI) The final 52-hour countdown for the October 22 launch of the country's first moon mission, Chandrayaan I, began early this morning at the Satish Dhawan Space Centre at Sriharikota.

ISRO sources told UNI, initially there was a minor glitch. It was soon rectified and the final countdown began. All parameters were being checked for the launch scheduled for 0620 hrs on Wednesday.

The fully assembled Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (PSLV-C11) was moved to the second launch pad from the Vehicle Assembly Building (VAB) on October 18 with a host of scientists launching sequence rehearsal last morning. The sequence went as planned.

If the weather turns out to be fine, the 44.4 metre tall PSLV-C11, the workhorse of ISRO, would blast off from the sophisticated second launch pad as scheduled on the morning of October 22 to put Chandrayaan I in orbit.

The mission, in all, would carry 11 instruments, including five from India and six abroad, to the lunar surface for various studies and investigation of chemicals, minerals and possible presence of water.

UNI GV GM BDP BST1012

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