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India’s Mission to Mars

INDIA’S MISSION TO MARS

According to the ISRO (Indian Space Research website: “Mars Aorbiter Mission is India’s first interplanetary mission to planet Mars with an orbiter craft designed to orbit Mars in an elliptical orbit. The Mission is primarily technological, considering the critical mission operations and stringent requirements on propulsion and other bus systems of spacecraft. It also states: “One of the main objectives of the first Indian mission to Mars is to develop the technologies required for design, planning, management and operations of an interplanetary mission.”

India’s first robotic Mars probe set sail for the Red Planet 30 November, 2013, with a vital rocket burn to catapult the spacecraft out of the realm of Earth’s gravity and into interplanetary space. The Mars Orbiter Mission is due to enter orbit around the Red Planet on 24 September, 2014, two days after NASA’S MAVEN Mars probe arrives. Calling India’s first space mission to Mars ‘historic, an enthusiastic Times of India reported that India’s space budget is 5.5% of NASA’s. The New York Times recently applauded what will be, if it succeeds, the venture’s striking cost-effectiveness. India’s spaceflight engineering labour costs are low. To quote The Times of India again: “building things creatively and inexpensively has become a national strength.”

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