Credit: ISRO

The fifth and final lunar bound orbit maneuver for Chandrayaan-2 spacecraft was performed successfully today (September 01, 2019) beginning at 1821 hrs India Standard Time (IST) as planned, using the onboard propulsion system.

Credit: ISRO

The duration of the maneuver was 52 seconds. The orbit achieved is 74 x 79 miles (119 x 127 kilometers). All spacecraft parameters are normal, reports the Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO).

Credit: ISRO/Inside Outer Space Screengrab

Lander separation

The next operation is the separation of the Vikram Lander from the Chandrayaan-2 Orbiter, which is scheduled on September 02, 2019, between 1245 – 1345 hrs (IST).

Following this, there will be two deorbit maneuvers of Vikram to prepare for its landing in the south polar region of the Moon.

Credit: ISRO/Inside Outer Space Screengrab

Touchdown time line

Tentative plan for future operations after today’s maneuver are as follows, according to the ISRO:

  • Vikram Separation September 2, 2019; 12:45 – 13:45 IST
  • Deorbit 1: September 3, 2019; 09:00 – 10:00; 109 x 120 kilometers
  • Deorbit 2: September 4, 2019; 03:00 – 04:00; 36 x 110 kilometers
  • Powered Descent: September 07, 2019; Vikram Touchdown; September 07, 2019; 01:30 – 02:30 IST

The Vikram Lander of Chandrayaan 2 is named after Dr Vikram A. Sarabhai, the Father of the Indian Space Program. It is designed to function for one lunar day, which is equivalent to about 14 Earth days.

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