Chandrayaan-2, built by the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) will launch the country’s second lunar mission at 0913 GMT (1443 IST) on July 22, after the suspension of the initial launch, due to a “technical hurdle” earlier this week, Said on Thursday.
The spacecraft looked set for launch atop a Geosynchronous Launch Vehicle (GSLV) Mk III — India’s most powerful rocket — from the Satish Dhawan Space Centre, but the countdown was halted 56 minutes and 24 seconds before the planned liftoff at 2:51 am (2121 GMT Sunday).
The Chandrayaan-2 — or Moon Chariot 2 — India’s Moon mission is part of India’s ambitious space programme, and its success would have propelled the South Asian nation into the rarefied company: Russia, the United States and China are the only countries to have landed a craft on the lunar surface.
India has spent about $140 million on Chandrayaan-2 — designing and building almost all of its components domestically — and hailed the mission as one of the cheapest ever. A soft landing on the Moon would be a huge leap forward in India’s space programme.
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