Chandrayaan-2 has completed one year, has seven years of fuel left, says ISRO
The agency added that the spacecraft was ‘healthy’ and subsystems were performing normally.
The Indian Space Research Organisation said on Thursday that the second lunar mission, Chandrayaan-2, has completed one year in orbit around the moon and has seven more years of fuel left, PTI reported.
“Though the soft-landing attempt [of the lander carrying the rover] was not successful, the orbiter, which was equipped with eight scientific instruments, was successfully placed in the lunar orbit, an ISRO statement said. “The orbiter completed more than 4,400 orbits around the moon and all the instruments are currently performing well.” The agency added that the spacecraft was “healthy” and subsystems were performing normally.
“The orbiter is being maintained in 100 +/- 25 km polar orbit with periodic orbit maintenance maneuvers,” the statement added. “So far, 17 OMs are carried out since achieving 100 km lunar orbit on 24th September 2019. There is adequate onboard fuel to remain operational for about seven years.”
Chandrayaan-2’s Vikram lander had attempted a soft landing on the moon on September 7 last year, but lost communication with ISRO minutes before touchdown. Following a hard landing, its debris was strewn across about 750 metres of the crash site.
On December 3, the United States National Aeronautics and Space Administration announced that it found debris of Chandrayaan-2’s lander on the lunar surface, and credited Indian engineer Shanmuga Subramanian for the finding. NASA had released images that showed the site of the impact and the associated debris field.
However, ISRO chief K Sivan said the space agency’s orbiter had located Chandrayaan-2’s lander much before NASA had.