The Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO) has managed to find to its moon lander Vikram on the lunar surface. The news was broken by an official last Sunday. ISRO is still conducting investigations about what went wrong with the Vikram lander but is relieved to know where it is.
ISRO Chairman K. Sivan said, ‘We’ve got the image of Vikram on the lunar surface from our orbiter. We are analyzing the data.’ No communications have been possible as of yet with the Vikram lander. Chandrayaan-2 orbiter is currently orbiting the Moon and was able to take pictures of the Vikram lander. The space agency has also been able to take thermal images of the lander on the lunar surface as per reports that quote ISRO chairman K. Sivan.
Chandrayaan-2, a project worth 978 crores Indian Rupees, was launched on July 22 into space using the heavy-lift Indian rocket Geosynchronous Satellite Launch Vehicle-Mark III (GSLV Mk III). It had three crafts – the orbiter (eight payloads), Vikram (four payloads) and Pragyan (two payloads). Vikram was separated from the orbiter as it made its way to the Moon on September 2. Unfortunately, the Vikram lander lost control while trying to attempt a soft landing on the lunar surface and ended up crash-landing with a communication loss.
Despite that, there still exists the possibility that by using the right orientation, the Vikram lander might be able to generate power and recharge its batteries using solar panels. However, as times goes by; the probability of that happening is getting low. There is also the probability that the impact shock may have damaged the lander. Had the Vikram lander successfully landed on the lunar surface, India would have joined the list of the countries to have achieved a soft-landing on the Moon. Those countries are the USSR, the US, and China. India would also have been the first country to have ever launched a mission aimed at exploring the still unknown south pole.