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Old 07-17-2009, 08:36 PM
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Default Chandrayaan News Alert! Chandrayaan-1 Mission Suffers Setback

Chandrayaan News Alert!

Chandrayaan -1, India's first lunar probe, is facing a serious technical issue that might jeopardize the entire mission and bring it to a premature end, according to reports.

According to The Times of India, S. Satish, a spokesperson from ISRO, has confirmed that the Star Sensors aboard the craft have failed. These are the same sensors, which help the crafts orientation towards the moon. With these having failed, the Chandrayaan is using its antenna pointing mechanism along with the onboard gyroscopes to over come the challenge. The officials, however, are unsure as to how long the spacecraft can hold on to this mode and continue functioning.

The Chandrayaan was actually designed to operate normally for two years. With this issue, the life span of the craft might just be reduced. The ISRO spokesperson has, however, added that the craft itself continues to perform normally and that almost all the data that was required from the mission has already been collected. Additionally, the current snag does not affect the information-grabbing capacity of the probe. So, the mission is pretty much on, even now.

The Chandrayaan made headlines last year on Oct. 22 when it became first lunar probe to be launched by India. The successor to the Chandrayaan 1, the Chandrayaan 2 is already in the works and will be launched in 2013.

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