Two years back, India’s low-cost Mangalyaan spacecraft entered orbit around the Red Planet representing a milestone in the country’s space program. With this achievement, India joined a club of deep space explorers such as the United States, Russia and Europe, all of which have reached Mars.
Now a photo of Mars, taken by a simple and low cost camera of Mangalyaan, has found place on the cover of the venerable National Georgaphic magazine, known for its high quality images.
Reports suggest that only India’s Mangalyaan has taken some best images of the Red planet, which more than fifty missions before failed to do so.
India was the first Asian nation to reach Mars orbit, and the first nation in the world to do so in its first attempt.
According to David Alexander, Director of the US-based Rice Space Institute, the capability and knowledge demonstrated by India with the success of Mars mission is astonishing and the knowledge gained from the operations of the mission will be invaluable, both in the training of flight operations and mission control staff, as well as in future launches.
The overall cost of Mangalyaan mission was just Rs. 450 crore and was made to last six months but has now survived till date.
In addition, Mangalyaan has also found a special place on the new Rs. 2,000 currency note introduced by the government after its demonetisation move.