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Historic moment for India: ISRO's Chandrayaan-II plans first ever Moon landing in 2018

After Chandrayaan-1 launched in 2008 was a success, ISRO is preparing the second mission, Chandrayaan-II for landing. ISRO is gearing up to land its very first lunar rover by the end of March 2018, as part of its Chandrayaan-II mission.

ISRO is also planning to send three unmanned vehicles which include, an orbiter craft that will hover above the moon’s surface, plus a rover and a lander that will safely plop that rover on the moon. This will be the ISRO’s first attempt to get a more delicate and precise up-close look at the lunar surface.

Chandrayaan-1 was launched from Sriharikota off the East coast of India at an estimated value of $83 million. ISRO’s 5-foot by 5-foot cube made it into lunar orbit and discovered some “magmatic water” on a Moon crater. But, in November 2008, the spacecraft crashed into the Moon and got lost in the lunar orbit. The craft had fulfilled almost 80 percent of its tasks before it lost contact with ISRO. It was found again by NASA in 2016.

If everything goes according the plan, this mission on the Moon will be completed in 14 Earth days, that’s just enough time for the Moon to make one full orbit around our planet. Lastly, the whole project would cost $93 million and the orbiter craft would make a detailed 3D map of the moon surface whereas, the lander will get an up-close view of the moon’s crust and mantle.


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