Chandrayaan-2 is 98% successful; Gaganyaan next priority, another moon mission by 2020: ISRO chief

K Sivan said that while they were trying to establish contact with 'Vikram', the orbiter's life had increased to 7.5 years due to the optimal mission operation though its designed life was one year.

Published: 21st September 2019 04:36 PM  |   Last Updated: 22nd September 2019 01:24 AM   |  A+A-


ISRO chairman K Sivan at the convocation of IIT Bhubaneswar on 21 September 2019. (Photo | EPS)

Express News Service

BHUBANESWAR: Chandryaan-2 has achieved 98 per cent of mission objectives and India's next space priority is the launch of crewed orbital spacecraft Gaganyaan by end of next year, chairman of Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) K Sivan said here on Saturday.

In his inspiring address at the 8th convocation of IIT Bhubaneswar, Sivan said Gaganyaan is an extremely important mission for India as it will give the much-needed boost to science and technology besides making the country a space superpower.

K Sivan elaborated: "We are working on a new target and going to launch the first unmanned human spacecraft Gaganyaan by December 2020 and second by July 2021. The first manned mission is hopefully to take place in December 2021 when the first Indian will be lifted from ISRO centre to space."

“There are 8 instruments in the orbiter and they are performing their roles perfectly. Regarding the lander, we have not been able to establish communication with it. Our next priority is Gaganyaan mission,” he said.

Even as scientists are working hard to establish contact with lander ‘Vikram’, the noted space scientist said, the space agency has been successful in technology demonstration as the life of orbiter has increased to 7.5 years due to the optimal mission operation though its designed life was one year.

"It means we can now receive 7.5 times data than it was expected. It will also result in mapping the entire lunar surface in great precision and detail. The bulk of the instruments to carry out the inter-planetary science is also in the orbiter. Except for the soft landing part, all other new technology elements including navigation census and propulsion were validated. That’s why the project can be termed as 98 per cent successful," Sivan said.

READ HERE | Chandrayaan-2: Hard landing of Vikram to help orbiter look for water on Moon, says ISRO

The ISRO chairman advised IIT students to take a risk and be innovative to achieve success in life. Innovation comes with a high level of risk and failure. It may sound crazy, but initial outcomes of innovation could be imperfect. In fact, most of the successful innovations of the world come from crazy ideas, he said.

"When you roll up your sleeves to take up challenges for nation-building, three things will play a major role - conquering personal fear, taking calculative risk and innovation backed by lateral thinking. If you don’t take a chance, you can never achieve anything significant in life," he observed.

"I have always been denied my first choice"

The ISRO chief, who is known for the success behind India's GSLV spacecraft, said as far as his career is concerned he is always denied his first choice.

"After High School, I wanted to study engineering but ended up pursuing BSc Mathematics. Later, I got into engineering and joined the Vikram Sarabhai Space Centre (VSSC) at Thiruvananthapuram, though I wanted to join the ISRO Satellite Centre ISAC (now URSC) at Bengaluru. At VSSC, I wanted to join the Aerodynamics group, but was made a part of the PSLV project,” Sivan said.

In every stage of my life, he said, he never got what he wanted as his first choice. "But I learnt many valuable lessons. Life and career are not about making the best choices, but making the best of the opportunities available to you. If something is denied you, something bigger is waiting for you," he said.

Quoting Dalai Lama, Sivan said, sometimes not getting what you want is a wonderful stroke of luck. "Do some fantastic mistakes in life, make sure you learn from these mistakes. Focus on innovation, success will follow you," he advised IIT students.

(With online desk inputs)

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