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Chandrayaan-2 to be launched on July 15: ISRO


Chandrayaan-2, India’s second mission on the moon, would be launched on July 15, according to the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) Chairman K. Sivan. As the Indian space agency is all set to embark on its most complex mission, an uncharted territory so far, the landing on the moon near the South Pole would be on September 6 or 7.

The launch would take place at 2.51 am on board the GSLV MK-III vehicle from the spaceport of Sriharikota. Earlier, the ISRO had kept the launch window for the mission from July 9 to July 16.

The spacecraft, with a mass of 3.8 tonne, has three modules, Orbiter, Lander (Vikram) and Rover (Pragyan).

“Orbiter would have eight payloads, Lander three and Rover two,” said Sivan.

According to the ISRO, Orbiter, with scientific payloads, would orbit around the moon. Lander would soft land on the moon at a predetermined site and deploy Rover.

The scientific payloads on board Orbiter, Lander and Rover are expected to perform mineralogical and elemental studies of the lunar surface. The Orbiter and Lander modules would be interfaced mechanically and stacked together as an integrated module and accommodated inside the GSLV MK-III launch vehicle. Rover is housed inside Lander.

After the launch into an earth-bound orbit by GSLV MK-III, the integrated module would reach the moon orbit using the orbiter propulsion module and subsequently, Lander would separate from Orbiter and soft land at the predetermined site, close to lunar South Pole, the ISRO said.

Rover would roll out for carrying out scientific experiments on the lunar surface, it said, noting that instruments were also mounted on Lander and Orbiter for carrying out scientific experiments.