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India's latest Moon-shot fails

By Bubbajim · 13 replies
Sep 7, 2019
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  1. India was all set to become the fourth nation to make a successful soft-landing on the Moon. Their latest probe, Chandrayaan-2 (‘Moon vehicle 2’), had journeyed for thousands of miles and safely made it to our natural satellite. The descent began and all was going according to plan until an unknown error meant India’s space agency Isro lost contact with the probe a mere 1.3 miles above the lunar surface.

    The landing phase is always the most tricky part of an already incredibly difficult operation. So much so that it is often dubbed the "15 minutes of terror." In this case the terror turned to disappointment, as contact was lost seconds before landing was meant to take place.

    Chairman of Isro, Kailasavadivoo Sivan, announced that the descent had been normal until communication was lost, and that the “mission’s data would be analysed” to ascertain what exactly went wrong. The fate of the craft is unknown, but it’s likely to be in bits, strewn across the Moon’s surface.

    Chandrayaan-2, which launched in July, comprised a landing module and a rover. The lander, named Vikram after Isro’s founder, would have deployed the rover, nicknamed Pragyan, which means ‘wisdom’ in Sanskrit. Pragyan was host to numerous sensors and instruments designed to search for water, check the composition of lunar minerals, and measure ‘moonquakes’.

    This has been Isro’s most advanced and challenging project to date. Even more impressively, it was done on a relatively tiny budget of $150 million. While the mission was ultimately unsuccessful, India’s Prime Minister Narendra Modi has said that he is proud that Isro came so close to achieving their historic goal.

    Permalink to story.

  2. Uncle Al

    Uncle Al TS Evangelist Posts: 5,710   +4,047

    In the endearing words of Ha-boo ..... "please come again" .......
  3. neeyik

    neeyik TS Guru Posts: 286   +246

    Not including this one, two out of the last 10 missions to the Moon failed; historically, the number of failures across 136 missions has been 59 (I.e. 44% failure rate). They've done really well to get that close to a successful landing.
    TempleOrion and NimbusTLD like this.
  4. VitalyT

    VitalyT Russ-Puss Posts: 4,612   +3,222

    They should have outsourced it to USA.

    Also, India is notorious for stowaway problems. Probably got a few in this one too.
    p51d007 likes this.
  5. abhitanshu

    abhitanshu TS Rookie

    Communication to vikram lander lost after 2.1 km from moon. mission was not successfully failed as most of the gadgets were installed in orbiter and rover has only 14 days of planned life. orbiter will provide data up-to 7.5 year and it is working fine. only 5% mission has been failed rest 95% is success even though it was first attempt and that too at minimal cost. we proud of our isro.

    jai hind
    Gmachine, Godel, TempleOrion and 2 others like this.
  6. p51d007

    p51d007 TS Evangelist Posts: 2,069   +1,322

    Boy, we've trashed our planet, now lets trash others LOL.
    Surprised the "Earth first" types aren't complaining about this.
  7. Lew Zealand

    Lew Zealand TS Guru Posts: 837   +730

    I tried to watch the live feed on YT, I really did. It was the single most awful video feed I've ever seen, I made it about 90 seconds before closing the window. Maybe the central 40% was the actual mission feed itself and rest of the frame was taken up by horrible clashing color fields covered with block text, flashing text, looping animated logos, and jingoistic slogans. It's a different day and age now but there was zero feel of excitement of achieving a first, rather it was like a Paul Verhoven film missing all of the satire and style.

    This is what I though of first:
    but amazingly this is less visually offensive.
  8. axiomatic13

    axiomatic13 TS Maniac Posts: 231   +162

    I watched the whole thing. It was compelling. India should be proud of themselves. No one has gotten space travel right the first time.
    TempleOrion likes this.
  9. Dimitrios

    Dimitrios TS Guru Posts: 531   +393

    Sounds like a pop up ad from the late 1990's early 2000's that claims you won a prize lol. Did you win anything?

    Anyway funny comment, you win best comment for the weekend.
    Odium likes this.
  10. bhattaraib58

    bhattaraib58 TS Rookie

    There is always next time.
    TempleOrion likes this.
  11. Ram Verma

    Ram Verma TS Rookie

    Indians crying over losing contact with a machine but not over 7 million Kashmiris who are unable to contact each other since a month.
    MikitaM likes this.
  12. captaincranky

    captaincranky TechSpot Addict Posts: 15,183   +4,128

    There was most likely malware, scamware, or ransomware in the feed. This is, after all, India we're talking about. How else did you think they were going to pay for the mission?

    The age old adage about ending a flight successfully is, "any landing you can walk away from is a good one". I hate to say this, (no I don't), but maybe they should have sent one of their "untouchables" along, to see how the touchdown went.
    Last edited: Sep 8, 2019
    Capaill likes this.
  13. Capaill

    Capaill TS Evangelist Posts: 949   +525

    Someone should ring up a random person in India and say "Hi, I'm calling from Microsoft. We have detected suspicious activity in your lunar lander and it may have a virus. If you would like us to log in and clean it, please send your credit card details to ...."
    Odium and captaincranky like this.
  14. Black Paper

    Black Paper TS Member Posts: 26   +22

    I hope India is proud of such a historic attempt.

    Unfortunately, I can't say the same for the bigotry I've witnessed in this comment section.
    axiomatic13 likes this.

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