Chandrayaan 2: Critical manoeuvers that ISRO will perform before landing on Moon

Ribhu Mishra
Chandrayaan 2, ISRO's Chandrayaan 2, Chandrayaan 2 landing

ISRO's Chandrayaan 2 Mission: ISRO successfully launched its mission to the Moon at 1443 hours IST on July 22 onboard its mammoth rocket GSLV Mk III M1 and injected its spacecraft into Earth's parking orbit. The Chandrayaan 2 will now go through different critical stages where it will be manoeuvered to enter the next phases of its mission. The Chandrayaan 2 is on its way to the south polar region of the Moon and will be the first spacecraft to land far from the Moon's equator in a polar region of the Moon. ISRO has informed earlier that it has made no changes in the landing schedule despite the launch delay of a week. ISRO called off the launch of Chandrayaan 2 on July 15 due to a technical issue.

In order to reach to the south polar region of the Moon in 48 days instead of 55 as scheduled earlier, ISRO's spacecraft will have to see some alteration in its course to the Moon. ISRO informed in a statement that they are not planning to change the landing date and as a required action to meet the schedule they will alter the course of the spacecraft. The space probe of ISRO will have to clear some complicated and critical procedures to meet the requirements of its missions.

Chandrayaan 2, Chandrayaan 2 Landing

K Sivan, the chairman of Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) said that "There are at least 15 complex manoeuvers that Chandrayaan 2 has to undergo over the next one-and-half months duration before it enters in to its final and most critical of stage, which is, the soft landing of the Vikram lander and Pragyan rover on the lunar surface on September 7."

READ: India on its way to Moon again as Chandrayaan-2 takes off

Chandrayaan 2 will have to go through some crucial phases during its mission to the Moon. Here is a brief about the crucial parts of the Chandrayaan 2 mission :

1. The span of July 22 to August 13:

After being launched on board the GSLV Mk III M1 to the Earth's orbit on Monday, ISRO's Chandrayaan-2 was injected into an earth parking 170 x 39120 km orbit. ISRO's spacecraft is set on an orbital path around the Earth which has a perigee (nearest point to the Earth) of 169.7 km and an apogee (farthest point to the Earth) of 45,475 km in its elliptical orbit around the Earth. The Chandrayaan 2 will undergo at least 5 manoeuvers in order to raise its orbit over the next 23 days.

2. August 13

Chandrayaan 2 will leave the Earth's orbit and set a 7-day-long course to the lunar orbit through the lunar-transfer-trajectory.

3. August 20

The spacecraft will enter the lunar orbit and will start orbiting the Moon in a circularized 100x100 km orbit, and this will be done through a series of orbital maneuvers.

4. September 2

The Lander Vikram and the Rover Pragyan will detach from the Orbiter and set on a decent course in an orbit closer to the Moon and continue to go around it for as much as 5 days.

5. September 7

The lander Vikram will enter in its final phase of landing on the lunar surface. Depending on how soon the lander module of Chandrayaan 2 Vikram is able to find a suitable landing spot, it should take approximately 20-30 minute to complete the soft landing.

The lander has cameras installed on board to guide it and will help it to avoid landing in a crater. After four hours of its landing, the Rover Pragyan will roll out from Vikram and start roaming for a total distance of 500 meters on the lunar surface at an extremely slow pace of 1 cm per second (60 cm in per minute). These two modules will be operational for 1 lunar day which is equal to 14 days on the Earth. The Orbiter will continue its work for one year.