The Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO), with their lunar mission Chandrayaan 2, is one step away from making history. Vikram, the lander of Chandrayaan 2, is about to make its final descent to make a soft landing on the lunar surface. Chandrayaan 2 is in an attempt to pull off the exceptional feat of landing at the moon’s south pole. Here’s an interesting fact about Vikram the lander’s landing point on the moon.
Following the conventional traditions, every country, when they launch a space mission or lunar mission; tend to name the landing point or the point of contact with something familiar or noteworthy. The landing point of Vikram, the Chandrayaan 2 lander has been named after Dr. Vikram Sarabhai, the father of Indian Space Program, and the Founder of the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO). Thus, the south pole of the moon has a Vikram Sarabhai Point.
To give you a better context, here are some examples; When Neil Armstrong landed on the Moon, the point of landing was named Sea of Tranquility; it was named such because early astronomers mistook these places as seas. Another such instance is the landing point of Chandrayaan 1, which was named after Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru, the first Prime of India, post freedom.
The location of the Vikram Sarabhai point, on which Chandrayaan 2's lander Vikram will attempt a soft landing of the rover Pragyan, is on a high plain between two craters, Manzinus C and Simpelius N. It is situated at a latitude of 70 degrees South.The Vikram Sarabhai point is the southernmost point of landing ever on the lunar surface.Vikram is now hours away from making its soft landing at the Vikram Sarabhai point and begin exploring the south pole of the moon.
Chandrayaan 2, the second lunar mission by ISRO, was planned with the intent of a deeper study of the moon’s surface, and the presence of water molecules on the moon that was discovered by Chandrayaan 1. With Chandrayaan 2 inching closer to success minute by minute, the entire world has set its eyes on to what Chandrayaan 2 discovers. The ₹ 978 crores Chandrayaan 2, was launched into space by India’s heavy-lift rocket, the Geosynchronous Satellite Launch Vehicle Mark – II, on July 22nd, 2019. Chandrayaan 2’s success will be the key for India’s entrance into the Space Elites, after Russia, the US, and China.