ISRO’s lander will soft-land on the Moon and deploy the Rover0o
The Indian Space Research Organisation (Isro) has begun conducting simulation tests for its second moon mission, Chandrayaan-II, at its facility in Challakere, about 200km from Bengaluru.
“As of now, some landing tests have kicked off and the project is moving ahead,” sources in Isro said. In a statement made in Ahmedabad, Isro chairman A S Kiran Kumar said these tests are ‘hazard avoidance and landing exercises’.
The second moon mission is an advanced version of Chandrayaan-I and will consist of an orbiter, lander and a rover.
The mission is aimed at placing an orbiter around the moon and sending a lander and rover to the moon’s surface. It’ll be launched using the GSLV-MKII, which Isro is testing.
While the initial launch of Chandrayaan-II was scheduled much earlier, failure on part of the Russian space agency (Roscosmos) to supply the lander delayed the project. First conceived as a joint mission with Russia, the project has become India’s independent programme.
The tests are simulations of moon landings so as to perfect the conditions on moon. “These are routine tests before any such project. The lander is expected to soft-land on the moon and deploy the rover,” said an official.