India’s Mars Orbiter Mission spacecraft crosses lunar orbit
India’s Mars Orbiter Mission (MOM), informally called ‘Mangalyaan’, crossed the distance of the Moon’s orbit on Monday morning, said the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO).
Zee Media Bureau/Salome Phelamei
Bangalore: India’s Mars Orbiter Mission (MOM), informally called ‘Mangalyaan’, crossed the distance of the Moon’s orbit on Monday morning, said the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO).
”MOM is now the farthest object sent into space by India,” Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) announced on Monday.
As per sources, the Mars spacecraft crossed the lunar orbit around 7.20 am IST, thus becoming the farthest object sent into space from Earth by India.
To measure the distance of Mars Orbiter from the ground, a coded ranging pulse is sent to the spacecraft. When the spacecraft receives this pulse, it returns the pulse on its downlink.
“The distance to the spacecraft and ground station can be computed from the delay between sending and receiving this pulse,” scientists explained.
The Mars Orbiter spacecraft is expected to reach the Red Planet Mars on September 24, 2014 after a 300-day journey around the sun.
If ISRO’s mission is successful, India will become the fourth space agency globally to visit Mars after the Soviet Union, the United States and Europe.
Early on Sunday morning, ISRO carried out the critical manoeuvre of placing the spacecraft in the Mars Transfer Trajectory.
“The injection operation was performed successfully at 1.19 am and everything is fine,” ISRO Chairman K Radhakrishnan was quoted saying minutes after the trans-Mars injection (code name for the slingshot operation).
India’s first interplanetary spacecraft, the Mars Orbiter, was launched into Earth orbit from the First Launch Pad at Sriharikota, Andhra Pradeshon 5 November, 2013, by ISRO’s PSLV-C25 rocket with a perigee of 264.1 km, an apogee of 23,903.6 km, and inclination of 19.20 degrees.