Mars Orbiter spacecraft completes 90 percent of its journey to Red Planet

Mars Orbiter Mission (MOM), India's first interplanetary mission has completed 90 percent of its journey to the Red planet, according to an ISRO official on Thursday. This means, now it's just 27 days away for the spacecraft to enter into the Mars orbit.

Last Updated: Aug 28, 2014, 19:41 PM IST
Mars Orbiter spacecraft completes 90 percent of its journey to Red Planet
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Zee Media Bureau

Chennai: Mars Orbiter Mission (MOM), India's first interplanetary mission has completed 90 percent of its journey to the Red planet, according to an ISRO official on Thursday.

This means, now it's just 27 days away for the spacecraft to enter into the Mars orbit.

As the Mars spacecraft nears its destination, scientists are gearing up to meet the challenge of restarting the onboard liquid fuel engine, which has been in sleep mode for nearly ten months.

“The spacecraft has completed 90 percent of its journey to Mars. On September 14, its trajectory would be corrected,” a senior official of Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO), was quoted as saying to IANS.

He said the spacecraft is slated to enter into the Mars orbit on September 24.

On September 24, the manoeuvring of the spacecraft will begin around 7.30 am. And the speed of the spacecraft will be reduced from the current velocity so that the Mars Orbiter enters into the orbit.

The official said restarting the onboard liquid fuel engine will be a challenging task as it was dormant for nearly 300 days.

“However, necessary redundancy and other measures have been incorporated in the spacecraft design and we hope, not to face much problem in restarting the engine,” he said.

ISRO said the spacecraft and its payloads are in good condition.

As on March 31, 2014, India had spent Rs.349 crore on its Mars Orbiter Mission of the total Rs.450 crore budget on the project.

The MOM probe was launched from Satish Dhawan Space Centre SHAR, Sriharikota on November 5, 2013, by the ISRO using a Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (PSLV) rocket C25 at 09:08 UTC (14:38 IST).

(With Agency Inputs)