Mid-course correction manoeuvre is likely in early April

All health parameters of the Mars Orbiter Mission are normal and a mid-course correction manoeuvre is likely to be carried out in early April, according to S. Arunan, Project Director, Mangalyaan.

“The second of the four trajectory correction manoeuvres will be made, probably on April 9, to make minor changes that may be required owing to the solar radiation pressure on the spacecraft,” he told journalists here on Saturday, on the sidelines of Probe-2014, a symposium at the National Institute of Technology, Tiruchi (NITT).

The mission boasted several new technologies, and the onboard autonomy was an important feature. Since there would be a communication delay in view of the long distance involved, the autonomy enabled the spacecraft to take decisions on its own. This option could be incorporated in the future missions of the ISRO as it would help to cut ground complexities and improve the reliability of satellites, he said.

The success of Mars Orbiter Mission, he said, enhanced the image and brand of the country in space technology. The ISRO proposed to bring India’s science laboratories under a wider umbrella to develop scientific payloads for more elaborate studies and investigations on planets, even possibly for a landing mission.

Later, in a presentation at the symposium, hosted by the Electronics and Communication Engineering Association of the NITT, Mr. Arunan said the Mars Orbiter Mission proved the country’s capabilities in deep space communication, navigation, mission planning and management.

Presiding over the inaugural ceremony, NITT Director S. Sundarrajan said that under the changing educational scenario, innovation and inspirational teaching was the key. Competencies had to be shared among institutions and the curriculum must meet industry requirements.