Chandrayaan 2: Impact shock may have caused damage to Vikram Lander
Bengaluru, Sep 09: Even as ISRO tries to establish contact with the Vikram Lander, some scientists are of the view that the impact shock may have caused damage to the lander.
While ISRO chief D Sivan said that they are still analysing the data, other scientists point out that the possibility of Vikram suffering damage cannot be ruled out. This was due to hard landing and it may have not landed at a desired level of velocity. It may not have landed on its four legs and the impact shock may have caused damage to the lander, officials say.
This was the most critical part of the manoeuver and when the system does not work well, it will hit the moon, officials further explained about the Vikram Lander. Unless everything is compensated which included compensating gravity, the lander will not come down smoothly and touch the surface, officials also explained.
It was the faulty execution of the last stage of the operation due to which the Vikram Lander lost communication. Some scientists, who continue to analyse the data also do not rule out the possibility of an anomaly with regard to the velocity, while landing.
ISRO chairman, D Sivan said that they had found the location of the Vikram Lander on the lunar surface and the orbiter had clicked a thermal image of the lander. However they are still trying to establish contact, the ISRO chief also said.
Sivan said that the last phase was not executed in the right manner and it was in that phase that they lost the link with the lander and could not establish contact.
At 1.45 a.m. on September 7, 12 minutes into its descent onto the lunar surface, the lander lost contact with the earth. It is believed to have deviated from its path, fallen silent, and probably crashed on the moon.
The pictures are among the early images sent later in the day by the main Chandrayaan 2 spacecraft, which continues to orbit the moon from pole to pole from a 100-km distance.
The lander was spotted some distance away - possibly about half a kilometre - from its intended touchdown point, reports said.
The originally chosen region was s about 70° south of the lunar equator and about 600 km from the lunar south pole.
On September 8, news reports quoted ISRO chairman K Sivan as saying the agency was trying to restore contact with the lander.
The image of the lander rover "Pragyan" is housed inside it was captured by the on-board camera of Chandrayaan-2 orbiter, which is healthy, safe and functioning normally in the intended orbit around the moon.
The orbiter camera is the highest resolution camera (0.3m) in any lunar mission so far and shall provide high-resolution images which will be immensely useful to the global scientific community, the Bengaluru-headquartered space agency had said earlier.
Considered as the "most complex" stage of the country's second expedition to the moon, the lander was on a powered descent for a soft landing when it lost contact.
The data is being analysed, the ISRO had said soon after.
Asked if the lander was 'damaged" during the 'hard landing", Sivan said: "That we do not know."
But some space experts said Vikram suffering damage in the hard-landing cannot be ruled out.