‘Vikram’ lander is lying in tilted position; ISRO trying to regain contact

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New Delhi: In what could be good news, the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) has said that Chandrayaan 2’s ‘Vikram’ lander is lying in a tilted position on the surface of the moon but is in one piece.

The Vikram lander had lost contact with the orbiter of the Chandrayaan-2 mission two minutes before it was to soft-land on the lunar surface near the moon’s south pole.

ISRO chief K Sivan on Sunday said that the lunar orbiter, which is going around the moon at an altitude of 100km, had taken a thermal image of the lander on the moon’s surface. The orbiter’s camera is the highest resolution camera in any lunar mission so far. The effort to re-establish contact would continue for 14 days from Saturday – the mission life of the lander.

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According to ISRO officials, the thermal image shows that the lander had a hard-landing close to the location where it was planned to touchdown. “The lander is there as a single piece, not broken into pieces. It’s in a tilted position,” an ISRO official associated with the mission was quoted in reports on Monday.

ISRO and its chief Sivan have, however, underscored that even if the lander and the rover, Pragyan, are intact, they would not be able to transmit any scientific data without any communication.

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