Orbit fails to rise: Cost-effective Mars mission satellite in problem?

Mars satellite fails to rise orbit
Chennai, Nov 11: India's mission to Mars, launched last week, has hit its first problem. The satellite, which has successfully rose three orbits, was not able to raise its next orbit to the required 100,000 km.

Though the Indian Space and Research Organisation or ISRO says the satellite is "healthy" and another attempt to push it higher will be held early tomorrow morning, fear lingers around till the orbit actually rises successfully.

Instead of flying directly to Mars, the 350-tonne vehicle is scheduled to orbit Earth for nearly a month, building up the speed to "slingshot" its way out of the earth's gravitational pull to embark on its 260-million-mile journey.

ISRO staged a flawless launch last Tuesday of its Mars-bound spacecraft, loaded with a camera, an imaging spectrometer and a methane sensor to probe for life on the red planet

The Mars Orbiter Mission, known as "Mangalyaan", must travel 485 million miles over 300 days to reach an orbit around the red planet next September.

Another try to rise orbit will be held Tuesday morning

At its closest point it will be about 200 miles from the planet's surface, and its furthest point will be about 50,000 miles away.

The 450-crore mission to Mars, India's first attempt at inter-planetary travel, has made international headlines, at least in part for its cost-efficiency. Its US counterpart, NASA's Maven, due to launch November 18 will cost 10 times as much.

With agency inputs

OneIndia News

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