Finally, India has planned 32 missions to launch this year, including the most complex one i.e. Chandrayaan-2, a top space official said in Bengaluru. “The year 2019 promises to be much more challenging to the ISRO community with 32 planned missions (14 launch vehicles, 17 satellites and 1 Tech demo missions),” said ISRO Chairman K Sivan in a New Year message.
Chandrayaan-2 is the second lunar mission to land on the moon. Costing nearly Rs 800-crore, this lunar mission will the 25th mission from the SLP (Second Launch Pad) of the spaceport at Sriharikota in Andhra Pradesh, about 90km northeast of Chennai and the development flights of Small Satellite Launch Vehicle (SSLV),” said Sivan.
Also, Chandrayaan-2 is the advanced version of previous ISRO’s mission, Chandrayaan-1, launched about 10 years ago. This spacecraft launched on board by a GSLV-Mk III is a totally indigenous mission, comprising an Orbiter, Lander and Rover.Chandrayaan-2 will be the first-ever mission to land a rover near the lunar south pole. ISRO had already successfully conducted the orbital test launch of GSLV-Mk III D by placing the GSAT-19 satellite in a geosynchronous transfer orbit on 5 June 2017.
Moreover, India’s maiden human space mission in 2021-22, Gaganyaan, will also be pursued this year, Sivan said in a first-of-its-kind New Year message from the space agency top executive to its staff. ‘Gaganyaan’ activities would go full steam to accomplish the various development and qualification milestones, said Sivan.
The Union Cabinet approved this mission to the tune of Rs.9,023-crore programme last Friday. The objective of the mission is to carry a three-member crew to low earth’s orbital and return them safely to a set destination on earth. Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s announcement of Gaganyaan on Independence Day announced that the mission would be undertaken by 2022. This has allowed the space agency to fulfil its dream of undertaking a human spaceflight programme, Sivan said. The pad abort test held on 5 July 2018 to test the escape system of the crew module has given ISRO confidence to pursue the human space mission, he added.
furthermore, ISRO is also aiming to re-instate its microwave remote sensing capability through the Radar Imaging Satellite (RISAT) series and hopes to attain geo-imaging capability through Geo-Imaging Satellite (GISAT) series. “The country will meet the high throughput bandwidth requirement of Digital India and also in-flight connectivity with the launch of GSAT-20,” Sivan said. With this ISRO will enhance remote sensing data for crop production estimation to cover 10 additional crops and provide inputs for water and energy security.
Sivan Said, 2019 is the birth centenary of the founding father of Indian Space Programme, Vikram A Sarabhai, and year-long celebrations, consisting of a host of national and international events, would commence from August 12, 2019. Terming 2018 as a year of many ‘firsts’ and ‘beginnings’ with profound growth in all directions, Sivan said, in 2018 ISRO completed 16 missions, signing off with seven successful missions within 35 days with two successful GSLV missions in a single year. Among other things, various discussions and partnerships with other space agencies in advanced technology areas of human spaceflight and other areas like LOX/Methane propulsion, joint satellite missions, among others were also witnessed during the year, he added.
Source: The Times of India