The Indian Space Research Organization is ready for its second lunar mission, Chandrayaan-2. The mission aims to go where no country has ever gone before, the Moon’s south pole region. The main aim of this effort is to improve the understanding of the Moon, and doing so, according to ISRO, will benefit India and humanity as a whole.
These insights and experiences aim at a paradigm shift in how lunar expeditions will be approached for years to come — propelling further voyages into the farthest frontiers.
Chandrayaan 2 attempts to foster a new age discovery, increase ISRO’s and the country’s understanding of space, to stimulate the advancement of technology, promote global alliances and inspire the future generations to become explorers and scientists, as per ISRO.
The Moon has the best potential to link us to Earth’s history. It offers an undistributed historical record of the inner Solar System environment. Even though there are some mature models, the origin of the Moon still requires further explanation and justification. Extensive mapping of the lunar surface to study variations in lunar surface compositions is essential to trace back the origin of devolution of the Moon. Proof for water molecules that was discovered by Chandrayaan- 1 needs further studies on the extent of water molecule distribution on the surface, below the surface in the tenuous lunar exosphere to address the origin of water on Moon.
The Lunar South Pole is especially intriguing because of the lunar surface area there that remains in shadow in much larger than that at the North Pole.
There is also a possibility of the presence of water in permanently shadowed areas around it. In addition, South Pole region has craters that are cold traps and contain a fossil record of the early Solar System.
On September 18, 2008, Manmohan Singh, the then Prime Minister approved the Chandrayaan-2 lunar mission.
From 2008 to 2019 the staff at ISRO planned and researched for the mission and will launch the mission on July 15, 2019. On entering Moon's sphere of influence, on-board thrusters will slow down the spacecraft for Lunar Capture. The Orbit of Chandrayaan-2 around the moon will be circularized to 100x100 km orbit through a series of orbital maneuvers. On the day of landing, the lander will separate from the Orbiter and then perform a series of complex maneuvers comprising of rough braking and fine braking. Imaging of the landing site region prior to landing will be done for finding safe and hazard-free zones. The lander-Vikram will finally land near the South Pole of the moon on 6th September 2019. Subsequently, Rover will roll out and carry out experiments on Lunar surface for a period of 1 Lunar day which is equal to 14 Earth days. The orbiter will continue its mission for a duration of one year.
ISRO also took to their official Twitter account as they posted two informational videos about the mission, take a look: