India’s most ambitious space mission yet, Chandrayaan-2 was expected to launch last night but did not. The Indian Space and Research Organization (ISRO) called off the launch on early Monday morning because of a ‘technical snag’ after the powerful GSLV Mark III rocket was put on hold 56 minutes before the blast-off. The Indian space agency tweeted that a revised launch date will be announced later.
Just before an hour of the launch, a technical snag was observed in the cryogenic stage of the rocket, which is designed to provide more thrust for every kilogram of propellant burned. The filling of the liquid hydrogen fluid was completed one hour before the launch, as per ISRO. There is another lift-off opportunity for ISRO tomorrow, only if the launch windows can meet several technical criteria. Hence ISRO chief K. Sivan asserts that the launch on July 16 is unlikely and could take weeks or months for a new date.
A technical snag was observed in launch vehicle system at 1 hour before the launch. As a measure of abundant precaution, #Chandrayaan2 launch has been called off for today. Revised launch date will be announced later.
— ISRO (@isro) July 14, 2019
“It was the right decision to call off Chandrayaan 2 launch. We could not have taken any chance in such a big mission. Several rounds of testing are performed of every part. Every movement needs to be monitored at every second,” former Defense Research and Development Organization’s director of public interface, Ravi Gupta, told news agency ANI.
Ravi Gupta, Former Director Public Interface DRDO: It was the right decision to call off #Chandrayaan2 launch. We could not have taken any chance in such a big mission. Several rounds of testing are performed of every part. Every movement needs to be monitored at every second. pic.twitter.com/08UyWOzj5D
— ANI (@ANI) July 15, 2019
The sequel mission to Chandrayaan 1 which detected the presence of water on the Moon in 2019, Chandrayaan-2 is India’s most challenging space venture yet. It comprises of a 3.8-tonne spacecraft loaded with an orbiter, the lander and the rover, carried by the country’s most powerful rocket, 640-tonne GSLV Mark III aka ‘Baahubali’. All the equipments involved in Chandrayaan-2 are made in India.
President Ram Nath Kovind was present at the Satish Dhawan Space Centre at the time of the launch. The mission comes with an approximate price tag of $124-million, which is less than half the budget of Hollywood superhit Avengers Endgame ($356 million), a Sputnik International report analyzed. ISRO is operating Chandrayaan-2 with a budget 20 times less than its counterpart NASA