The Chandrayaan I moon mission was a success because scientists at the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) were meticulous about the finer details of the project and learned from the mistakes made by space agencies such as NASA in the past, S M Ahmed, principal scientist with the Central Instrumental Laboratory, Hyderabad, said on Wednesday.
Ahmed, who joined the Chandrayaan I project at the Vikram Sarabhai Space Centre in 2005, was delivering a lecture on the theme ‘The success story of Chandrayaan I’ organised by the Institution of Engineers, Thiruvananthapuram chapter.
The mission gifted India engineering and technical advancements, revealed the presence of water, ignited young minds and provided unique business opportunities. The business of Antrix Corporation, ISRO’s commercial arm, tripled, when India became the fourth nation to send an object to the moon.
‘’We got spectacular five-metre images of the lunar surface. Never was the moon studied in such high resolution,’’ he said. In ‘inserting’ the Chandrayaan satellite into an orbit around the moon, ISRO scientists did a fabulous job, he said. ‘’That’s where (NASA’s) Ranger missions failed. ISRO scientists did it successfully. They learned from past mistakes,’’ he said. Ultimately, the moon mission also prepared India for another bigger target - Mars.
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Satish Babu and Amarnath Raja spoke on the occasion.