Chandrayaan 2: India's second moon mission launched successfully

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Chandrayaan 2: India's second moon mission launched successfully
Chandrayaan 2: India's second moon mission launched successfully

New Delhi : After technical glitch on July 15, ISRO on Monday (July 22) launched India's second lunar mission Chandrayaan 2 on a powerful GSLV-MkIII-M1 rocket from its spaceport in Sriharikota to explore the unchartered south pole of the celestial body by landing a rover.

The GSLV lifted-off from the Satish Dhawan Space Centre into cloudy skies at 2.43 pm and successfully placed the 3,850-kg Chandrayaan-2 into the earth orbit about 16 minutes later.

The mission was riding an investment of Rs 978 crores and with this there was immense pressure on the scientists for its success. The mission's success will make India only the fourth nation to land a rover on Moon.

In a textbook launch, the towering GSLV-MkIII-M1 lifted off majestically from the second launchpad at the Satish Dhawan Space Centre here, over 100 km from Chennai, as the Indian Space Research Organisation scientists broke into jubilation.

K Sivan, who announced the success of the mission, said "it is the beginning of a historical journey of India towards the moon." 

"We bounced back in flying colours after the earlier technical snag," he said about the glitch that made the space agency reschedule the Chandrayaan-2 launch from July 15 to Monday.

There will be 15 "very crucial manouvres" in the next one and half months before the satellite is brought around the moon, he said in his post-launch address from mission control centre.

"After that the D-Day will come and on that day we are going to experience 15 minutes of terror, to ensure the landing is safely near the South Pole," he added.

After cancelling the launch on July 15, the ISRO announced new dates on July 18 with a tweet.

"Chandrayaan 2 is ready to take a billion dreams to the moon now stronger than ever before! Join us for the launch on Monday 22 July, 2019 at 2:43 PM IST," ISRO had tweeted on July 18 while announcing the rescheduled launch.

Chandrayaan-2 comes 11 years after ISRO's successful first lunar mission Chandrayaan-1 which scripted history by making more than 3,400 orbits around the Moon and was operational for 312 days till August 29, 2009.