ISRO to launch world’s first rocket with 3 rovers to Moon in 2017
When ISRO’s Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle-Xl (PSLV-X1) lifts off around December 28, 2017, with India’s first private mission to the moon by Team Indus, it promises to be one for the history books.
The reason? It is for the first time in the history of space exploration that a rocket will be flying three rovers. Of the three rovers in this private moon mission, two are from Japan and one belongs to Team Indus.
The PSLV-XL launched 20 satellites in one ‘go’ on June 22, 2016. But this is the first time that it will demonstrate its capability of carrying three rovers placed inside a lander. “This will go a long way in further enhancing the confidence of the global community in the PSLV,” said an Isro official. Again around January 27, 2017, the powerful rocket will launch 83 satellites in a single mission.
According to the organisers of the global lunar competition, Google Lunar X Prize, “the Japanese Team, Hakuto, is facing the challenges with its unique dual rover system consisting of the two-wheeled ‘Tetris,’ and the four-wheeled ‘Moonraker’, which are linked by a tether”. The organisers added that while Tetris will explore holes thought to be caves in the moon, Moonraker will capture 360-degree images.
Team Indus’s new-look sleek rover is solar-powered and the mission duration is one lunar day– equivalent to 14 earth days. The Team Indus lander can carry up to 20kg of payload.