Science India: Mission control loses contact with Indian moon lander

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  1. tom_mai78101

    tom_mai78101 The Helper Connoisseur / Ex-MineCraft Host Staff Member

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    India's attempt to land a spacecraft on the surface of the Moon for the first time appears to have failed, with "communication from the Lander to the ground stations" lost, according to the Indian Space Research Organisation's Mission Control Centre.

    Why it matters: India's space agency hasn't yet declared the landing a failure outright, but it doesn't look good. If the Vikram lander had touched down, it would have made the nation only the fourth — after the former Soviet Union, the U.S. and China — to successfully land on the lunar surface.

    Details: It's not yet clear why the lander lost contact with Mission Control just before it was expected to land.

    • Vikram separated from the Chandrayaan-2 orbiter around the Moon on Sept. 2 and slowly started to descend, losing speed and preparing for landing in the Moon's south polar region.
    • Vikram — and the small Pragyaan rover it carried — were expected to investigate the water-ice environment in that part of the Moon.
    • Scientists have long thought that the Moon's poles likely contain a fair amount of ice, which researchers think might be able to be converted into fuel for farther afield missions one day.

    Read more here. (Axios)
     

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