Chandrayaan enters Lunar Trajectory, to meet Moon on Nov 8

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Chennai, Nov 4 (UNI) The Indian Space Programme today attained a significant milestone when its first unmanned moon mission, Chandrayaan-I, reached the Lunar Orbit, 14 days after it was launched by the PSLV-C11 from the SHAR Range on October 22.

The spacecraft entered the Lunar Transfer Trajectory after the fifth and final orbit raising manoeuvre was carried out at 0456 hrs this morning.

During this manoeuvre, the spacecraft's 440 Newton liquid engine was fired for about two and a half minutes.

With this, Chandrayaan-1 entered the Lunar Transfer Trajectory with an apogee (farthest point to Earth) of about 380,000 km, Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) sources told UNI.

''By firing the Newton Liquid Engine, sufficient push has been provided to Chandrayaan-1, to enable it to meet the Moon on November eight,'' the sources said.

''Chandrayaan-1 will approach the Moon on November 8 and the spacecraft's liquid engine will be fired again to insert the spacecraft into lunar orbit.'' From close to the moon, the spacecraft would go into a preliminary orbit after a couple of days. ''Some fine tuning will be done so that the spacecraft will be taken to a distance of 100 km from Moon and the Moon Impact Probe will be ejected, marking planting of the Indian tricolour in the Lunar surface,'' the sources added.

The health of the spacecraft was being continuously monitored from the Spacecraft Control Centre at ISRO Telemetry, Tracking and Command Network (ISTRAC) in Bangalore with support from Indian Deep Space Network (IDSN) antennas at Byalalu.

Since its launch on October 22 all systems onboard the Chandrayaan-1 spacecraft were performing normally, the sources said.

UNI GV RSA DS1136

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