After a spectacular descent, the Chandrayaan 2 mission has been stalled at a cliffhanger. ISRO seems to have lost contact with the Vikram lander, and is waiting to hear an analysis of data from the lander’s final moments from Chandrayaan 2 mission control.
The descent of the spacecraft started at 1:38 am. The first leg of the descent and deceleration was performed successfully bringing the velocity of the landing module down manyfold.
ISRO had lost communication with the Vikram lander when it was 2.1 km from the moon’s surface. By this point, the lander had completed the first ‘rough braking’ part of its descent where four of the module’s propulsion engines were fired at the same time to lower its speed significantly.
The communication link with the orbiter was left switched on, in the hope that whatever the news be, ISRO’s mission control team is listening for it. The last data from the Vikram lander is currently being analysed as said by the ISRO chairman K Sivan in a brief announcement.
ISRO shared a timeline of events for the lander Vikram, which was to land at 1.53 am and the rover Pragyan which was scheduled to roll down a ramp at 5.19 am. The first clicks from the rover of Pragyan were expected at 5.45 am.
PM Narendra Modi had visited the ISRO Control Centre to address the scientists, following the setback of losing communication with the lander. He said that everyone stands in solidarity with our scientists. We are proud of our space program.
The PM has assured the scientists that the nation is with them and they have made an incredible contribution to national progress. he added that their team worked hard, travelled far & these very teachings will remain with them. The learning from today will make them stronger and better.