Chandrayaan 2: India’s second moon mission — complete coverage

Chandrayaan 2 orbiter ‘sights’ Vikram lander on moon

The last image of Vikram relayed at ISRO’s communication centre just before the agency announced that communication was lost with the lander. Photo: YouTube/ISRO Official  

The Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) has retrieved images and located the lander Vikram on the moon on September 8 and is analysing them for a clear picture of the lander’s condition, it is learnt.

At 1.45 a.m. on September 7, 12 minutes into its descent onto the lunar surface, the lander lost contact with earth. It is believed to have deviated from its path, fallen silent, and probably crashed on moon.

Watch | Chandrayaan's Vikram lander: what we know so far

The pictures are among the early images sent later in the day by the main Chandrayaan 2 spacecraft, which continues to orbit the moon from pole to pole from a 100-km distance. The lander was spotted some distance away — possibly about half a kilometre — from its intended touchdown point, reports said.

The originally chosen region was about 70° south of the lunar equator and about 600 km from the lunar south pole.

On September 8, news reports quoted ISRO chairman K. Sivan as saying the agency was trying to restore contact with the lander.

Neither Dr. Sivan nor authorised ISRO officials responded to phone calls or messages sent confirming the citing of the lander.

News agency ANI however, quoted Dr. Sivan as saying, “We have found the location of lander Vikram on the lunar surface. The orbiter has clicked its image. We are trying to re-establish contact with it. It would be premature to say anything” else at this stage.

Chandrayaan 2 orbiter ‘sights’ Vikram lander on moon

The orbiter is fitted with a fine Orbiter High Resolution Camera of 30-cm resolution. A Terrain Mapping Camera-2 is another imager put among the orbiter's eight payloads.


Hours after mishap

Informal but knowledgeable circles who have seen images of the lander on moon said the images were harvested hours after the landing went awry.

Meanwhile, experts said time was running out and the possibility of re-establishing communication with the missing lander looks “less and less probable”.

Watch | A brief history of lunar exploration

A senior official associated with the mission said, “Progressively... as time goes by... it’s difficult (to establish link)”. However, with “right orientation” it can still generate power and recharge batteries with solar panels,” he added.  “But it looks less and less probable, progressively,” the official said on condition of anonymity.

Another top ISRO official said the “hard-landing” of Vikram had made the task of reviving links more difficult as it may not have the “right orientation,” and may not have landed on its four legs.

(With inputs from Madhumati D.S.)

Our code of editorial values

This article is closed for comments.
Please Email the Editor

Printable version | Oct 23, 2021 1:20:08 AM |

In This Package
Chandrayaan-2's Vikram hard landed within 500 metres of touchdown site, says govt.
Latest Moon flyby finds no trace of India’s Chandrayaan-2 Vikram lander: NASA
Chandrayaan 2: ISRO releases pictures of moon surface
Chandrayaan 2 Vikram Lander had a hard-landing, may be hiding in a shadow: NASA
Chandrayaan 2’s Vikram lander, Pragyan rover fade into lunar sunset, their batteries likely dead
Sivan terms Chandrayaan 2 mission a huge success
Chandrayaan 2: As lunar night falls, ISRO to call it a day on revival of Vikram Lander
NASA orbiter captures images of Chandrayaan 2 Lander Vikram’s attempted landing site
Has Chandrayaan 2’s Vikram Lander setback affected India’s moon mission?
You are reading
Chandrayaan 2 orbiter ‘sights’ Vikram lander on moon
Chandrayaan-2: VSSC scientists keep fingers crossed for establishing contact with Vikram
Chandrayaan-2: A rapid dive to 15 minutes of terror
After Vikram lander debacle, ISRO shifts focus to Chandrayaan 2’s orbiter
15 nervous minutes that united India: When smiles vanished and tension took over
ISRO launches to resume in October: Sivan
ISRO emerges the star of the show
Landers are always on slippery slope
2.1 km from moon's surface, Vikram goes silent
From ‘all is not lost’ to ‘a broken dream’: foreign media’s mixed reactions to Chandrayaan 2
Watch | Modi's pep talk to ISRO scientists after loss of communication with Vikram lunar lander
Chandrayaan 2: nation rallies behind ISRO after it lost contact with Vikram lander
Modi gives a tight hug to an emotional ISRO chief
Chandrayaan 2: Our resolve will not waver, Modi tells ISRO scientists
Chandrayaan 2: Vikram on the cusp of historic lunar landing
“No need to get dejected”, PM tells ISRO scientists
Communications from lander ‘Vikram’ lost: ISRO
Soft landing on moon | This mission is for the planet, says former astronaut
Chandrayaan 2 chronicles: ISRO, orbiter, lander, rover indulge in ‘banter’ ahead of touchdown
Chandrayaan 2 | A chequered story
Chandrayaan 2: when Vikram sets foot on the moon
Modi to witness ‘Vikram’ soft-landing on moon
Chandrayaan-2 lander homing in on moon
Chandrayaan 2 | Moon lander Vikram all set to land on September 7
Chandrayaan 2 lander Vikram undergoes first of 2 ‘de-orbiting’ manoeuvres
Chandrayaan 2 completes final lunar orbit manoeuvre, stage set for lander separation
Chandrayaan-2 narrows gap from Moon
Chandrayaan 2 sends first moon picture
Chandrayaan-2 placed deftly in lunar orbit
Chandrayaan-2: It was a tense 30 minutes, says ISRO Chairman
Chandrayaan-2 successfully inserted into Lunar orbit
Crucial manoeuvre for Chandrayaan-2 today
Watch: Chandrayaan-2 launched successfully
Chandrayaan-2 launch live: spacecraft successfully placed in orbit
Chandrayaan-2 to try moon landing on Sept. 7
Chandrayaan-2 launch on July 22
ISRO calls off Chandrayaan 2 launch due to technical glitch
How will Chandrayaan 2 study the moon?
The Hindu Science Quiz: Of Chandrayaan-2, India’s Moon Mission
Watch: India set for Chandrayaan 2 launch
Chandrayaan-2 all set for 3.84 lakh km voyage
India’s Moon Mission: Ten things to know about Chandrayaan-2
ISRO’s lunar touchdown has dry run on soil fetched from Tamil Nadu
Ahead of Chandrayaan 2 launch, ISRO chairman K. Sivan offers special prayers at Udupi Krishna mutt
Chandrayaan-2 will carry 14 Indian payloads
Chandrayaan-2 most complex mission: ISRO chief Sivan
ISRO plans to land a rover on lunar south pole: Sivan
‘Chandrayaan 2 will carry NASA’s laser instruments to Moon’
Lunar lander faces crucial test
Scaled down test for safe landing of Chandrayaan-2 lander
Chandrayaan-2 launch vehicle to be moved to launchpad by Sunday
Chandrayaan-2: Lunar orbiter spacecraft arrives in Sriharikota
Chandrayaan-2 launch on July 15: ISRO
ISRO gears up for Chandrayaan-2 mission
Chandrayaan-1 data confirms presence of ice on Moon: NASA
Next Story