Chandrayaan-2: Orbiter clicks thermal image of Lander Vikram, ISRO tries to establish contact with it
ISRO on Sunday said it found the location of the Lander Vikram, and was trying to establish contact with it
file photo of Lander Vikram
Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) on Sunday said that it has found the location of Lander Vikram, with which, the space agency lost communication moments before it was scheduled to make a soft-landing on the South Pole region of the moon.
The orbiter has clicked a thermal image of the Lander.
"We have found the location of Lander Vikram on lunar surface and orbiter has clicked a thermal image of Lander," K Sivan said. However, no communication has yet been established with the Lander. "We are trying to establish contact. It will be communicated soon," K Sivan had said.
Vikram Lander right before losing contact
The Vikram lander was to land on the moon's surface at 1.55 am on September 7. It had been descending for 12 minutes. Three minutes before that, it lost contact with Earth, 2.1 km above the moon`s surface when it lost contact with the ground station at ISRO headquarters in Bengaluru.
File photo of Indian Deep Space Network
The Lander Vikram of Chandrayaan 2 is named after Dr Vikram A Sarabhai, the father of the Indian Space Programme. Designed to function for one lunar day, which is equivalent to about 14 Earth days, Vikram has the capability to communicate with Indian Deep Space Network (IDSN) at Byalalu near Bangalore, as well as with the orbiter and rover.
What is Rover Pragyan?
While the Lander weighing 1,471 kg was designed to execute a soft landing on the lunar surface, the Rover, a 6-wheeled robotic vehicle named Pragyan, can travel up to 500 m and it leverages solar energy for its functioning. It can only communicate with the Lander, which was separated from the orbiter on September 2 at 1.15 pm, entering a descending orbit around the Moon.
Pragyan, housed inside the Lander Vikram was expected to roll out and deliver scientific payloads to conduct surface and subsurface experiments.
Pragyan, Chandrayaan 2's Rover or space exploration vehicle, means 'wisdom' in Sanskrit. Pragyan is a 27 kg, 6-wheeled robotic vehicle which can travel up to half a kilometre. Unlike Vikram, Pragyaan is capable of only communicating with the lander. It leverages solar energy to function.