New Delhi: After the challenging mission
to moon, ISRO on Wednesday said it has begun preparations for sending a spacecraft to Mars within the next six years.
Government has sanctioned seed money of Rs 10 crore to
carry out various studies on experiments to be conducted,
route of the mission and other related details necessary to
scale the new frontier, said ISRO Chairman G Madhavan Nair.
"Already mission studies have been completed. Now we
are trying to collect scientific proposals and scientific
objectives," he told reporters on the sidelines of a day-long
workshop of the Astronautical Society of India here.
He said the space agency was looking at launch
opportunities between 2013 and 2015.
Chandrayaan-I, the country`s maiden unmanned moon
mission, appears to have fired the imagination of young
scientists who have taken to space sciences and ISRO plans to
tap this talent for its mission to Mars.
"A lot of young scientists are being brought into the
mission, particularly from the Indian Institute of Space
Technology, the Physical Research Laboratory, Tata Institute
of Fundamental Research and other research laboratories," K
Radhakrishnan, Director of Vikram Sarabhai Space Centre, said.
He said the space agency would use its Geosynchronous
Satellite Launch Vehicle (GSLV) to put the satellite in orbit
and was considering using ion-thrusters, liquid engines or
nuclear power to propel it further towards Mars.