Sriharikota, July 21
India’s second moon mission Chandrayaan-2 seeking to explore the unchartered Lunar south pole by landing a rover will be launched onboard its most powerful rocket GSLV-Mk0III-M1 from here Monday, a week after the lift-off was aborted due to a technical snag.
The Rs 978-crore mission, which has been rescheduled for Monday after scientists corrected the glitch in the rocket, will be launched at 2.43 pm from the second launchpad at Satish Dhawan Space Centre here, over 100 km from Chennai.
The Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) scientists, who aborted the previous launch with 56 minutes left for the countdown to end on July 15, have taken quick remedial action based on an analysis carried out by a team set up to look into the snag and announced the rescheduled launch three days ago.
A 20-hour countdown for the launch began at 6.43 pm on Sunday, ISRO announced. Chandrayaan-2 comes 11 years after ISRO's successful first lunar mission Chandrayaan-1 which scripted history by making more than 3,400 orbits around the Moon and was operational for 312 days till August 29, 2009.
On the eve of launch, ISRO Chairman K Sivan said all preparations were on and the glitch had been rectified. "Whatever technical snag we observed on July 15 has been rectified. The vehicle is in good health... The (pre-launch) rehearsal has been successfully completed,” he said.
Billed as the most complex and prestigious mission undertaken by the ISRO since its inception, Chandrayaan-2 will make India the fourth country to soft land a rover on the lunar surface after Russia, the US and China. — PTI
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