The Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO) Chief K sivan on Sunday announced that Space Centre had located the Vikram lander with which ISRO lost contact moments before its scheduled landing on the lunar surface.
The orbiter which was declared healthy and functional by ISRO has clicked thermal images of the lander.
“We have found the location of Lander Vikram on lunar surface and orbiter has clicked a thermal image” said ISRO chief K Sivan told a news agency.
However, the scientists could not establish any contact with the Vikram lander. The ISRO chief maintained that it was premature to say anything while they are still trying to revive communication with the lander.
The Lander Vikram was expected to soft land on the Moon at 1.55 am on September 7. Minutes before the landing, when Vikram was just 2.1 km above the moon’s surface, its contact was lost with the ground station in Bengaluru.
After the incommunicado with Vikram lander in the early hours on Saturday the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) officials confirmed that the Orbiter is healthy, intact and functional.
Earlier, the Vikram lander successfully separated from Chandrayaan 2 orbiter at 1.15 hrs IST on September 2. The Orbiter on Chandrayaan 2 continues to orbit the moon in its existing orbit.
However, this was India’s first attempt to make a soft landing on the moon surface. Chandrayaan-2 costing Rs. 1000 crore will explore a region of moon where no earlier mission has gone, near the south pole of the Moon.
The landing in the South Polar Region is of great significance as it hasn’t been explored by scientists so far. According to ISRO, the surface area of the South Pole is much larger than the North Pole. Curiously, there is hope for finding traces of water in the permanently shadowed areas around it.