Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) Chairman G. Madhavan Nair indicated on Monday that India planned to launch a mission to explore Mars. It was under the conceptual stage.
Mr. Nair was addressing the inaugural session of the 8th International Conference on “Low Cost Planetary Missions” here.
He said ISRO was poised to launch the Chandrayaan-2 mission to land on the Moon and conduct experiments in 2012-13. This would be followed by a manned expedition to the Moon in 2015 and plans to explore Mars.
The five-day conference, organised by ISRO in collaboration with the International Academy of Astronautics (IAA) and the Astronautical Society of India (ASI), was inaugurated by Chief Minister Digambar Kamat. Goa Minister for Science and Technology Churchill Alemao was also present.
Speaking about low-cost planetary missions, Mr. Nair said India had set a trend in building low-cost satellites with Chandrayaan-1 being the best example. It cost below $100 million as compared to the nearly $500 million that were spent on similar expeditions by other developed countries.