Recently, it was reported that the Indian space agency is preparing for its next mission, after a heartbreak from Chandrayaan-2. The Vikram lander had lost contact shortly before the scheduled attempt to land on the moon’s surface on September 7. NASA has now found the crash site and debris of Chandrayaan-2 Vikram moon lander. Also Read - ISRO prepares to launch Chandrayaan-3 mission by November 2020: Report
The US space agency NASA has given credit to an Indian space enthusiast who examined pictures of the area of the moon taken by a US orbiting camera. The site was located by Shanmuga Subramanian, who on his own scoured the pictures taken by the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbital Camera (LROC), NASA and Arizona State University said. Also Read - NASA joins ISRO's effort to establish communication with Vikram, Chandrayaan-2's moon lander
The #Chandrayaan2 Vikram lander has been found by our @NASAMoon mission, the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter. See the first mosaic of the impact site https://t.co/GA3JspCNuh pic.twitter.com/jaW5a63sAf Also Read - Whole world's watching Chandrayaan-2's moon landing: Former NASA astronaut
— NASA (@NASA) December 2, 2019
The first mosaic image of the likely crash site made from pictures taken by the LROC on September 17 was downloaded by several people to look for signs of the Vikram, NASA said. One of them, Subramanian, contacted the LROC project with positive identification of debris, the agency said. Arizona State University (ASU) said: “After receiving this tip, the LROC team confirmed the identification by comparing before and after images.”
NASA said, “When the images for the first mosaic were acquired the impact point was poorly illuminated and thus not easily identifiable. Two subsequent image sequences were acquired on Oct. 14 and 15, and Nov. 11. The LROC team scoured the surrounding area in these new mosaics and found the impact site and associated debris field,” the statement added. In a statement, NASA said, “despite the loss, getting that close to the surface was an amazing achievement.”
Besides, ISRO is reportedly looking at November 2020 as the launch timeline for its next mission to the moon. The details about the next mission to the moon remain scarce at this moment. As per a report, the Chandrayaan-3 mission is a project in collaboration with JAXA, the Japanese space agency. The main aim is to send a lunar rover to the south pole of the moon. In a press statement, JAXA announced that the Chandrayaan-3 moon project could also see participation from NASA.
– With inputs from IANS