Chandrayaan-I moon findings
Chandrayaan’s moon findings: Water, rocks and traces of Apollo
Soon after India’s moon mission, Chandrayaan -1 was called off due to loss of signal in August this year,
National Aeronautics and Space Agency (NASA) thanked Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) for a landmark discovery.
A NASA instrument onboard Chandrayaan -1, revealed water molecules in amounts
greater than predicted. NASA said the M3 team found water molecules and hydroxyl at diverse areas of the sunlit
region of the moon's surface. The water signature appeared stronger at the moon's higher latitudes.
Water on the moon is just one of the many crucial moon findings. There are other
interesting facts that Chandrayan-1 discovered on its trip to the Moon.
Here is all that India's maiden foray to Moon revealed:
I. Iron on moon
Chandrayaan-1 confirmed presence of iron in the lunar soil and, for the first time, revealed changes in rock and mineral composition.
The sighting of the mineral is first in the past five years and only the second in 10 years following a US mission in 1998-99 and European mission in 2003.
II. Traces of Apollo 15
Camera on board Chandrayaan-1 recorded images of the landing site of US spacecraft Apollo 15, putting an end to conspiracy theories claiming
that the fourth US mission to moon was a hoax. The terrain mapper camera onboard Chandrayaan-1 also sent the images of tracks of the lunar rovers used
by astronauts to travel on lunar surface. A scientist told media that since lunar dust is dark, the disturbances left behind by the spacecraft and the rovers are easily distinguishable.
Chandrayaan could not capture the images of footprint left behind by the first astronauts on moon, Neil Armstrong and Edwin Aldrin, because of resolution capability.
III. Moon generates water 'molecules'
Chandrayaan-1 confirmed the belief that water molecules on the moon
are generated there itself. Chandrayaan's project director, Mylswamy Annadurai said, "The current thinking was that only other planetary bodies were
the source of water molecules on the Moon. But, this mission has changed that thinking. The new theory is that the water molecules
were not from an outside source, but are being generated then and there." The finding is now being further analysed.
IV. Moon topography and minerals
India's Chandrayaan-1 X-ray Spectrometer (C1XS) has gathered data for a total of 30 solar flares, giving the most accurate
measurements to date of magnesium, aluminum, silicon and calcium in the lunar surface. Chandrayaan-1 helped
ISRO prepare high-resolution, three-dimensional topography of moon. Chandrayaan managed to give a detailed study of distribution of various chemical and minerals
in the entire lunar surface and explored its permanently shadowed north and south polar-regions.
V. Of Helium and unanswered questions
ISRO's has yet to share how Chandrayaan findings further the objectives of space
communication/ tele- command, telemetry data reception- the objectives it listed out before Chandrayaan launch.
The Moon could be a major source of energy for human beings. The detection of Helium in the celestial body`s surface has also helped
in revitalizing newer lunar missions. ISRO admits that the mission had to be cut short, but it also maintains that India's
moon mission accomplished 90 per cent the target set by the scientists. In other words Chandrayaan is a job done, but not yet a job finished.
Source: India Syndicate
Mission to Moon
On November 15, 2008: India late on Friday became the fourth country to land a probe on the moon
when the 35-kg moon impact probe (MIP), with tricolours painted on all four sides, landed safely on the lunar
surface. The MIP landed on the south pole of the moon 25 minutes after it was released from
Chandrayaan-1 spacecraft, covering 100 km. With this, India has become the fourth nation after the United States,
the former Soviet Union and Japan to plant its flag on earth's only natural satellite.
Former President A P J Abdul Kalam, whose idea it was to include the impactor as part of Chandrayaan's cargo, described the
achievement as a gift to Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru's because the event happened on the 119th birth anniversary of India's first