After Chandrayaan-2's lander Vikram lost communication with ISRO's Mission Control Centre in Bengaluru on Saturday, the ISRO Chairman Dr. K Sivan in his first interview since then has declared that the Chandrayaan 2 mission has achieved close to 100% success. He said that Chandrayaan 2 had two aims - science and technology demonstration. Talking about the science part, he said that the Orbiter has achieved the science part. He shared that the Orbiter will share new data about the moon.
"Through Chandrayaan 2 we achieved - science and technology demonstration. The science is mainly achieved by Orbiter and the technology demonstration was for the Lander and rover. The data will provide us new science. The orbiter has already completed the science part of the mission," he said.
Talking about the technology part which was demonstrated by the Lander, he explained the four phases of Vikram's landing. Sivan added that while the first three phases were executed as planned, he said that the final phase was not executed properly. Highlighting that Vikram went from 30 km to 2 km towards the lunar surface, he said that even the technology demonstration was 90-95% successful. Hence, he concluded Chandrayaan 2 was very close to 100% success.
"The powered descent of the Lander to soft-landing had four phases- rough braking, position, fine braking, and terminal phase. First three phases were executed properly. The fourth phase was not executed properly hence we lost the connection with the Lander. Regarding the technology demonstration part - we could go from 30 km to 2 km of the moon. Hence I would say that the technology demonstration was 90-95% was done. So, in total, Chandrayaan 2 mission is very close to 100% success," he added.
Apart from the mission's success he also spoke about how PM Modi's speech regarding the mission motivated everyone. He added that this was an inspiration to all his colleagues. The Prime Minister had while departing from ISRO exchanged words with the ISRO Chairman. Seeing Sivan get emotional, PM Modi pulled him for a hug. Tears were seen rolling down Sivan's face as PM Modi held him in a tight embrace.
Earlier on Saturday morning at 1:50 AM when Vikram was scheduled to land, ISRO's Deep Space Antenna lost communication with Chandrayaan-2's lander- Vikram as it descended towards the lunar surface. The lander had descended from 30 km to 2km smoothly. During the final smooth braking stage, it had lost communication with Mission Control. Vikram was aimed at soft-landing on the moon, making India the fourth country to do so.