ISRO is all set to launch two lunar mission in the first half of 2018.
ISRO has announced that it is ready to launch Chandrayaan-2 mission, an advanced and heavier version of the previous mission, early in 2018. The objective of this mission will be to conduct a deeper probe of the lunar surface and will have scientific payloads on board orbiter and the rover will perform mineralogical and elemental studies of lunar surface.
Another mission by Team Indus will also be launched next year by ISRO. Team Indus is an aerospace start up who wants to unfurl the tricolor on the moon’s surface. This team comprises of Rahul Narayan and is backed by several notable investors like Nandan Nilekani, former ISRO chairman, K Kasturirangan, and other experienced persons.
Team Indus is planning this mission as part of a worldwide contest to win the Google’s Lunar XPRIZE. The teams will have to make the rover move 500 meters on the moon’s surface and send back high resolution images of the surface. Nandan Nilekani had earlier praised Team Indus and said,
Team Indus is pursuing a big hairy audacious goal. I invested in Team Indus as I believe in their audacious mission to reach and land on the moon.
Kiran Kumar, ISRO chairman, commented that the two missions are scientifically and technically very different. There is no comparison between them and will use GSLV Mk II rocket for the launch as the payload is heavier in Chandrayaan-2 mission.