Ahmedabad will Contribute 3 payloads for India’s Moon Mission

In Video: Introduction of Moon Mission Chandrayan. This Video was shown after Mr. Narendra Bhandari’s Popular Lecture in Science City, Ahmedabad


In Photo: Ahmedabad based Scientist Shri Narendra Bhandari

Project coordinator:National Planetary Science & Exploration Programme
(ISRO-PLANEX) and Senior Professor:Planetary and Geosciences group, Physical Research Laboratory, Navrangpura, Ahmedabad -380 009,India.Telephone No. (O) 0091-79-6302129 Ext.4266, Fax 0091-79-6301502, E-mail bhandari@prl.ernet.in ,web:http://www.prl.ernet.in/~planex

Main Points of Scientist Narendra Bhandari’s Lecture about India’s Moon Mission in Ahmedbad’s Science City

Ahmedabad, DeshGujarat

It is a proud thing that Ahmedabad will make and contribute three payloads for next year’s Moon Mission Project of India. Ahmedabad’s Space Application Centre (SAC-ISRO) will contribute Hyper Spectral Imager and Terrain Mapping Camera while Physical Research Laboratory (PRL) will cpntribute High Energy Ex-ray Spectrometer. Narerndra Bhandari , a senior Ahmedabad based scientist active in PRL said this at Science city Ahmedabad’s popular lecture series. Main points of his speech are given here to simplify the subject further.

– Moon Mission was conceived way back in 90s when in 1994 India had capability of operating PSLV Rocket but at that time Indian Government had intension to prioritize utility of space science for betterment of people. After utilizing India’s space science resources much for societal purposes like weather prediction, mapping, natural resources monitoring, communication etc, in year 2000 government gave green signal to Moon Mission project.

– A committee was set up for Moon Mission. Committee thought and discussed three options for Moon Mission; 1. Launching a Monitoring Orbit flying craft 2. Launching a Landing mission on the surface of moon and 3. Taking samples from moon. From these three options finally it was decided to launch a satellite in the orbit of moon in year 2007. It was thought that if we land on the moon it will be a landing at one single space and we will not be benefited to explore other parts. If we decide to take a sample, it will be a sample from just one part of the moon which will not be sufficient. It is better to map the moon using latest technology rather than the other two options.

– Project was delayed and at this stage Space Satellite craft Chandrayan for Moon Mission is scheduled to launch in next year.

– Project cost is now 500 crore Rs. Shri Bhandari said that this is not a huge cost for a project like Moon Mission; it is equal to just buying two jet planes.

– He said that out of the 500 crores, around 100 crores are spent for making three antennas to track our satellite that will go around the moon. India had no such antenna and we need three antennas for moon mission. If we go for hiring such antenna from Russia then it would cost 2000 Dollars per hour per single antenna and our mission is for two years. So you can count 2000 Dollars into total hours of two years into three. So to counter this problem Indian scientists decided to build own antennas with the cost of 100 crores. These antennas will be useful for the nation even after Moon Mission for a long time.

– 100 crores will be a cost of rockets. This is a standard cost for such rockets. 100 crores will be a cost of a satellite. And around 50 crores will be a cost of instruments.

– VSSC Tiruvandram will make rocket for Moon Mission; ISAC Bangalore will make 440 kg. 1.5 meter cube sized Lunar Craft, Shri Harikota will facilitate satellite launch facility with 44 meter PSLV, ISR and RAC Bangalore will make Tracking Telemetry (Antennas).

– At this point of time Bangalore has made 18 meter part of antenna which will be at the height of 30 meter when ready.

– 660 Watts power will be generated in lunar craft using solar panel. In the time of eclipse, craft will be operated by Lithium battery pack.

– There will be 11 payloads totaling the weight of 60 kgs on the craft. Payloads will use 60 Watts power. While housekeeping of the craft will use rest 600 Watts of power.

– India has made 6 payloads for the craft of Moon Mission. Among these are Terrain Mapping Camera, Laser ranging, hyper spectral imager, Lo energy Ex-Ray Spectrometer, High Energy Ex Ray Spectrometer, High Energy X Y rays Spectrometer.

– There was still scope for putting some more weight (10 kg.) of payloads after attaching all the Indian payloads on the craft. So India announced if any nation was interested to put their payloads into India’s mission. 13 applications were received in the response of this announcement. India approved U.S., Germany, Bulgaria, Sweden, Japan’s proposals and these nations are going to have their payloads on India’s Moon Mission craft.

– U.S. will have two payloads on India’s Moon Mission craft. These Payloads are Synthetic Radar which can see through the land and Moon mineral maper.

– In 2008 there will be 4 satellites on the four sides of the moon. India, China, U.S. and Japan are sending their missions to moon in the same year. However while other satellites will be there for few period. India’s craft will overlap all the four nations’ satellite because India’s satellite will be there for continuously two years- the longest duration among all the four missions. It will be discussed among India, China, Japan and U.S. that what can be done in cooperation in such a situation.

– Payloads from different institutions of India and from different nations will start to arrive at Bangalore from this month’s later part. Last payload will arrive before 15th of September this year.

– India’s moon mission craft will ultimately make a three dimension digital atlas of moon with five to 10 meter close resolution. Laser will capture perfect shape of topography and work as altimeter too. Craft will cover whole surface and along with cartographic work it will also do mini regional mapping. Being at nearly 4 lakh kms distance from the earth, this craft’s antenna will relay its results to India based receiving station. Craft will scan whole a surface of moon and explore it for silicon, calcium, iron, radon, uranium, thorium etc. elements for their mapping.

– The most challenging part of Moon Mission will be to make sure a craft is perfectly set at predefined part of orbit around the moon said Shri Bhandari. He said that in Moon mission we are not following Apollo’s path but we will first send a craft in the orbit of earth. We will keep increasing orbit area around the earth and at proper time we will fire it to the orbit of the moon. Initially craft will be at distance orbit but later on it will continue to go in nearer orbit and at last it will be set at 100 kms. Distance orbit from surface of the moon. If craft is pushed bit slowly it may get lost from the path and if pushed with some more force it may crash on the surface of the moon. So proper push will be the most critical part of moon mission.

-Watch related video on this page to understand more about Moon Mission craft Chandrayan’s path from earth to moon’s orbit. This video was shown after lecture of Shri Narendra Bhandari at Science city.

Related Links:

Moon Mission’s Official Website by ISRO

Detail Image of Path of Moon Mission

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