India’s first unmanned mission to the moon



India has launched its first unmannned mission to moon, following the trend started by China and Japan. Here are some basic facts about the mission:

a) The unmanned rocket is known as Chandrayaan-1. It costs 3.86 billion rupees, weighing about more than 1.3 tonnes, and is being sent on a two-year mission to orbit the moon.

b) India is the 3rd Asian country to send an unmanned mission into the lunar orbit. The Chandrayaan-1 is by far the cheapest spacecraft compared to India’s rivals.

c) Chandrayaan plans to map a three-dimensional atlas of the moon, and the surface’s chemical & mineral composition.

d) Currently there are 16 Indian satellites orbiting the earth, supporting telecommunications, TV broadcasting, earth observation, weather forecasting, remote education and health care. India’s aggregate of seven earth-observation satellites is the largest in the world.