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‘Mangalyaan’ victory awed the world: Ex- ISRO chief


Bhubaneswar, May 13: Padma Bhushan Dr K Radhakrishnan, former Chairman, Space Commission and Indian Space Research Organisation Chairman on Saturday said that India, after becoming the first Asian country to orbit a spacecraft around Mars and the first in the world to succeed in the very first attempt, is now on the threshold of climbing the next level of technology ladder.

“India’s ‘Mangalyaan’ mission was executed with commendable precision and the spacecraft is still healthy exploring planet Mars and sending data regularly to the Indian Deep Space Earth Station near Bengaluru,” Dr.  Radhakrishnan, who is also former Secretary in the Department of Space, said while delivering the address at the 4th Convocation of the SOA University here.

‘Mangalyaan’, as India’s Mars Orbiter Mission (MOM) is popularly known, was essentially a mission to demonstrate the country’s technological capability to orbit a spacecraft around Mars, he said adding “India is now on the threshold of climbing the next level of technology ladder, embracing international alliances for newer capabilities and fostering national space industry to meet national and global needs.”

Stating that the ‘world watched with awe’ as India became the first country to fly a spacecraft around Mars in its very first attempt on September 24, 2014, Dr. Radhakrishnan said any deep space mission like ‘Mangalyaan’ was complex, risky and challenging as compared to placing a spacecraft around the earth or moon.

“A mission to Mars is feasible in a specific Earth-Mars-Sun geometry that occurs only once in 26 months. In the case of Mangalyaan, the spacecraft was to traverse close to 660 million km in about 300 days undergoing pressures exerted by the radiation and gravitational forces of the sun and other planets,” he said adding  it was a huge computational challenge to predict the magnitude and impact of these forces and their impact as the spacecraft approached Mars.


Technological excellence apart, the Mangalyaan mission was lauded for clever use of a relatively low-capacity launcher PSLV to get off the gravity of earth and meticulous operations all through these years for this path-breaking mission which was possible due to the efforts of a brilliant and motivated team of scientists and engineers, he said.

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