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Chandrayaan-2 Launch Highlights: Launch successful, landing on moon first week of Sep

By Anuj Cariappa

New Delhi, July 22: ISRO launched Chandrayaan-2 mission to the moon at sharp 2.43 pm on Monday. The GSLV-Mk-3 blasted off from Satish Dhawan Space Station in Sriharikota with 3,290 kilograms payload. ISRO chief K Sivan announced that spacecraft which consists of orbitor, Vikram and Pragyan has been sucessfully placed in designated orbit.

This is the most technically complex mission undertaken ever by ISRO. Of course Gaganyaan, which would be far more complex will follow in 2022, but for now Chandrayaan-2 is the most complex ISRO mission till date.

Image - DD/Twitter

illed as the most complex mission undertaken by the ISRO, Chandrayaan-2 will make India the fourth country to soft land a rover on the lunar surface after Russia, the United States and China.

Stay tuned with us for all the LIVE updates relating to the launch:

Newest First Oldest First
5:13 PM, 22 Jul
About 16.20 minutes after the lift-off, the GSLV rocket placed Chandrayaan-2 into 170 km x 39059 kms Earth orbit. From here onwards, the mission will undergo a series of manoeuvres by scientists to carry out different phases of the mission over the next 48 days. Subsequent to the rescheduling of the launch, the space agency has tweaked the orbital phases, increasing Earth-bound phase to 23 days as against 17 days planned originally. At the end of the Earth-bound phase, the orbit of the spacecraft will be finally raised to over 1.05 lakh km before nudging it into the Lunar Transfer Trajectory taking it to the proximity of Moon in the next two days. Then gradually over the next few days it will be brought to 100 X 100 km circular orbit when the lander will separate and after another few days of orbiting it will make a soft landing at a chosen place on the Lunar surface. The soft landing of the lander - Vikram carrying rover 'Pragyan', one of the toughest phases of the mission and described by the ISRO chief as "15 minutes of terror (filled moments), would be attempted between September 6-8.
4:57 PM, 22 Jul
Scientists led by ISRO chief K Sivan watched the launch sequence in rapt attention and broke into applause after every key stage of the rocket's flight which progressed precisely as programmed. A visibly relieved Sivan, who announced the success of the mission, said "it is the beginning of a historical journey of India towards the moon." "We bounced back in flying colours after the earlier technical snag," he said about the glitch that made the space agency reschedule the Chandrayaan-2 launch from July 15 to Monday. There will be 15 "very crucial manouvres" in the next one and half months before the satellite is brought around the moon, he said in his post-launch address from mission control centre. "After that the D-Day will come and on that day we are going to experience 15 minutes of terror, to ensure the landing is safely near the South Pole," he added.
4:55 PM, 22 Jul
Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister YS Jagan Mohan Reddy has congratulated the ISRO team for the successful launch of Chandarayaan- 2 which, he says, is a giant leap in space technology. The successful launch places our country in the orbit of Moon Mission odyssey and ISRO has scripted history with this fluent take-off.
4:27 PM, 22 Jul
PM Modi watching Chandrayaan-2 launch.
4:08 PM, 22 Jul
PM Modi:
4:08 PM, 22 Jul
PM Modi tweet:
4:08 PM, 22 Jul
PM Modi tweet:
4:07 PM, 22 Jul
ISRO Tweet:
3:52 PM, 22 Jul
"Efforts such as #Chandrayaan2 will further encourage our bright youngsters towards science, top quality research and innovation. Thanks to Chandrayaan, India’s Lunar Programme will get a substantial boost. Our existing knowledge of the Moon will be significantly enhanced," tweets PM Modi. 110 replies 574 retweets 2,433 likes
3:52 PM, 22 Jul
I am extremely happy to announce that the GSLVMkIII-M1 successfully injected Chandrayaan2 spacecraft into Earth Orbit. It is the beginning of a historic journey of India towards moon and to land at a place near South Pole to carry out scientific experiments," Dr Sivan said.
3:11 PM, 22 Jul
Task is not over. Next challenge is to land the lander Vikram on moon surface, he says.
3:10 PM, 22 Jul
K Sivan congratulates all teams that worked on the mission.
3:07 PM, 22 Jul
Sivan lauds scientists who fixed the glitch due to which July 15 glitch was fixed. He says, the glitch was fixed in 24 hours.
3:06 PM, 22 Jul
ISRO control room erupted with claps when signal from satellite was received.
3:05 PM, 22 Jul
GSLV-Mk-3 has placed the satellite in Geosynchronous Transfer Orbit successfully, says ISRO chief K Sivan.
3:03 PM, 22 Jul
ISRO receives signal from satellite. This confirms sucessfully into the orbit.
3:01 PM, 22 Jul
Chandrayaan-2 Launch LIVE: GSLV-Mk-3 blasts-off from Sriharikota, spacecraft separates from launch vehicle
2:59 PM, 22 Jul
Less than a minute left for satellite injection.
2:58 PM, 22 Jul
Launch normal and GSLV-Mk-3 over 3000 kms away from earth.
2:57 PM, 22 Jul
Weighing about 3,850 kg, Chandrayaan 2 is a three-in-one integrated spacecraft. Several state-of-art indigenous systems were conceived and realised in the areas of navigation, guidance, control, onboard autonomy, precision sensors, and intricate communication links involving orbiter, lander, rover, and ground systems for this mission.
2:52 PM, 22 Jul
All parameters normal so far.
2:52 PM, 22 Jul
Payload to be placed in GTO in 8 mins.
2:50 PM, 22 Jul
Cryogenic stage performance normal.
2:50 PM, 22 Jul
Cryogenic stage ignited.
2:47 PM, 22 Jul
ISRO tweet:
2:47 PM, 22 Jul
L-1-10 performance normal.
2:46 PM, 22 Jul
L-1 stage ignited successfully.
2:43 PM, 22 Jul
30 secs left for launch.
2:40 PM, 22 Jul
The 43.43m tall three-stage rocket dubbed 'Baahubali' for its ability to carry heavy payloads would blast-off carrying Chandrayaan-2 and inject the spacecraft into Earth orbit about 16 minutes later.
2:39 PM, 22 Jul
Five minutes left. T -5 announcement made.

What went wrong with the Chandrayaan-2 launch:

A leak of helium gas from a bottle in the cryogenic upper stage of the rocket was the villain of the piece on July 15.

The leak forced the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) to cancel the launch of its Geo-synchronous Satellite Launch Vehicle-Mark III (GSLV-Mk III). It was a prestigious mission for ISRO because it involved putting the spacecraft Chandrayaan-2, with the lander, called Vikram, and a rover, named Pragyan, into an orbit around the moon.

Cost of the mission:

The cost of Chandrayaan-2 mission is Rs 978 crore, including Rs 603 crore for the orbiter, lander, rover, navigation and ground support network and Rs 375 crore for the heavy rocket -- Geo-stationary Satellite Launch Vehicle with an indigenous cryogenic engine

Where did Chandrayaan-1 leave us?

Chandrayaan-1 was India's first mission to the Moon and lasted for 312 days before the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) lost contact with it. The National Aeronautical and Space Administration (NASA) found it in 2017 still orbiting the Moon.

Chandrayaan-1 detected water molecules on the surface of the Moon in its maiden mission.

Chandrayaan-2 is aimed at sampling the water as well as other minerals, Nayak added.

According to mission scientists, global interest in India's low-cost Moon mission is peaking.

In 2014, ISRO successfully put a satellite into orbit around Mars, becoming only the fourth nation to do so. In 2017, India created history by successfully launching 104 satellites on a single mission, overtaking the previous record of 37 satellites launched by Russia.

If Chandrayaan 2 is successfully placed in the lunar orbit and its components fulfill the objectives then it would not only help us understand the Moon better but also create background knowledge to transform it into a staging area. From here, future human missions to explore far-off planetary bodies can be launched.

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