India Rockets into Mars Orbit

  • Breaks into big league
  • MOM never disappoints: Modi
  • PM showers compliments on ISRO scientists
  • Succeeding in first attempt was unprecedented
  • India celebrates yet another breakthrough

ISRO 4Hyderabad, September 24: India has created history once again when the Mars Orbiter Mission (MOM) entered the Martian orbit on Wednesday. Prime Minister Narendra Modi who was present at ISRO along with the scientists has rightly said that “Mom never disappoints”. The picture showing Modi hugging Isro chairman K Radhakrishnan would be etched in the memory of the Indians who are fortunate enough to witness the event. In fact, Isro, the organization which had made India proud on several occasions earlier did not disappoint in recent years. With the successful launching of MOM, India has become the only country in Asia to send a satellite to the red planet in the solar system.

ISRO 3Mangalyaan has been a dream project of the nation undertaken by the Isro scientists under the leadership of K Radhakrishnan. On the occasion of Independence Day celebrations in 2002, the then prime minister Dr Manmohan Singh said that India has undertaken the Mars Mission. It has come true in the tenure of NDA government. The satellite that the rocket has put in the Martian orbit is the fifth in the system. Three others were sent by NASA and the fourth by European Space Agency. Mangalyaan entering the Martian orbit in its maiden attempt is a testimony to Isro’s ingenuity and capability.

ISRO 2Mangalyaan has many firsts to its credit. It is the first Indian deep space mission. The same PSLV which was used to launch the low-earth satellites has been used to launch the deep space satellite too. It was also cost effective. While the NASA had spent 671 million US dollars to launch its satellite MAVEN, the Isro has spent just 74 million US dollars on the MOM. The amount our scientists spent was one-tenth of what the US spent. Dr Radhakrishnan had said that he had not compromised on the quality of the instrument or the number of instruments to be carried. MAVEN had reached the Maritian orbit four days before Mangalyaan did.

For the next six months the five orbiters going round the Mars would be sending very useful data. Scientists all over the world have been researching to know how and where the life originated in Mars. Earlier studies indicated that there are water channels in the southern part of the Mars.

Mangalyaan_scientists_cheer_AFP_650For Isro it was a bold gamble that paid off. When MOM was launched in 2013, some social scientists and skeptics ridiculed Isro for its audacity in hoping to achieve a huge target with limited resources. Former head of Isro Dr G Madhavan Nair was its strongest critic. He thought it would be a national waste to try Mangalyaan at this stage of Isro’s progress. He commented that it was a half-baked and half-cooked mission being attempted in undue haste. Many thought it was a misplaced idea of symbolism that could fail.

ISRO 1But Isro proved its former boss wrong. India broke in to the big league with its first attempt which even the US and Russia could not do. As PM Modi said, “The odds were stacked against India as out of the 51 missions attempted across the world so far, only 21 had succeeded. Travelling an incredible distance of 65 crore kms, we have gone beyond boundaries of human enterprise and imagination.” Thus Isro has become the fourth space agency in the world after Nasa, Russian Space Programme and the European Space Agency to join the elite Mars Club.

Kudos to Radhakrishnan and his team of excellent scientists!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.