Chandrayan-1 is vehicle for global research too: ISRO

Monday, 18 August 2003, 07:00 Hrs
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BANGALORE: India's spacecraft to the moon, Chandrayaan-1, will also carry instruments from other countries for scientific research, the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) has said.

The mission envisages placing a 525 kg satellite in a polar orbit 100 km above the moon. The satellite will be launched using a modified version of India's polar satellite launch vehicle.

Chandrayaan-1, named so by Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee, will obtain imagery of the moon's surface using high resolution remote sensing instruments in the visible, near infrared, low and high energy X-ray regions, ISRO said.

Vajpayee said in his Independence Day speech that India would send a spacecraft to the moon by 2008. This will be the country's first venture into deep space.

Friday's announcement means the government has cleared the proposal made by a committee comprising some of the top scientific brains for India's moon foray.

"Today, India is confident of undertaking a complex space mission because of its indigenously developed launch vehicle and spacecraft capabilities. This mission will provide a unique opportunity for frontier scientific research," ISRO said.

"Chandrayaan-1 is expected to be the forerunner of more ambitious planetary missions in the years to come, including landing robots on the moon and visits by Indian spacecraft to other planets in the solar system," ISRO's statement said.

The spacecraft will initially be launched into a geo-synchronous transfer orbit, and subsequently manoeuvred into its final lunar orbit using its own propulsion system. The spacecraft is expected to be ready for launch by 2008.

Source: IANS
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