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Chandrayaan-3 Launch May Happen Next Year: ISRO Chief Sivan

“The government has approved the project and we have formed the project team,” Sivan told the media.

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Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) Director Kailasavadivoo Sivan on Wednesday, 1 January, said that government has approved Chandrayaan-3, India’s second attempt to land on the lunar surface, and the project is ongoing.

Addressing the media, Sivan said, “Chandrayaan-3’s configuration will be similar to Chandrayaan-2. It will have a lander, rover and a propulsion module, but orbiter won’t be there. The government has approved the project and we have formed the project team.”

He also said that the agency has made good progress on Chandrayaan-2, even though it couldn’t land on the lunar surface successfully.

“The orbiter is still functioning, it's going to function for the next seven years to produce science data,” he added.

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Comparing Chandrayaan-2 and Chandrayaan-3, Sivan said that there is no objective difference between the two missions as the agency wasn’t able to accomplish its target the first time.

“In Chandrayaan-3, we want to demonstrate a soft landing. To carry a lander from here to the moon, we don't have an orbiter. A dedicated vehicle will take the lander to the moon. The lander will be a replica of the Vikram Lander,” the ISRO said.

‘Going to Be a Year of Chandrayaan-3 and Gaganyaan’

Speaking about India’s first manned mission to space – Gaganyaan – the ISRO director said that this year is going to be the year of Chandrayaan-3 and Gaganyaan.

He also said that the work in continuing on Chandrayaan-3 and Gaganyaan simultaneously, which might take 14-16 months. He also told the media that four astronauts have been identified for India’s first manned mission to space.

“We have identified the four astronauts, they were sent to Russia for medical checkup. They will undergo training in Russia,” the ISRO chief said. Reportedly, Gaganyaan will have two unmanned and one manned flight to space.

“We will be sending a humanoid as part of unmanned mission. Six science experiments will be conducted, related to microgravity and bioscience.”
Kailasavadivoo Sivan, ISRO Director

Other than the two missions, the ISRO director said that the space agency plans to launch at least 25 space missions in 2020. He also added that a second port is coming up in Tamil Nadu for which land acquisition has been initiated.

Sivan also said that as announced earlier, the Small Satellite Launch Vehicle (SSLV) will be launched this year.

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