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Chandrayaan 2: Second moon mission postponed due to technical glitch

T E Narasimhan & BS Web Team/Chennai 14 Jul 19 | 11:42 AM

Chandrayaan-2 launch live updates: The launch of Chandrayaan-2, India's second mission to the moon, was postponed after a technical glitch was observed in the launch vehicle system early morning on Monday.

Less than an hour before the scheduled lift-off, the Indian Space Research Organisation (Isro) informed of the launch being put off due to the snag. "It is not possible to carry out the launch within the window," said the mission director. The new schedule will be announced later.

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The launch was scheduled to have taken place at 2.51 am from the second launchpad at Sriharikota’s Satish Dhawan Space Centre (SDSC). The countdown to the launch was put on hold at 56 minutes and 24 seconds.

The technical snag was noticed when the cryogenic fuel was being loaded. The vehicle would need to be approached to assess the problem. The fuel loaded in the rocket would first have to be emptied, and then the rocket would have to be studied for further investigation. According to an Isro source, the whole process would take at least 10 days. The new schedule would likely be disclosed only after that.

ALSO READ: Chandrayaan-2: A timeline of India's mission to the moon from 2003 to 2019

The 640-tonne rocket Geosynchronous Satellite Launch Vehicle-Mark III (GSLV-Mk III), about 44-metre tall, is nicknamed 'Bahubali'. 

ALSO READ: FAQS: What makes Chandrayaan-2 special and why we are going to the moon

A Laser Retroreflector Array (LRA) of NASA is among the payloads and is aimed at understanding dynamics of Earth's Moon system and deriving clues on Lunar interior.

ALSO READ: Women make up 30% of Chandrayaan-2 workforce, two lead the mission

The first one was on 18.12.2014 carrying Crew Module Atmospheric Reentry Experiment. The second and third GSLV-Mk III went up on 5.2.2017 and 14.11.2018 carrying communication satellites GSAT-19 and GSAT-29 respectively. Interestingly, GSLV-Mk III will be used for India's manned space mission slated in 2022.

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