Before Mars: India’s lunar dream

chandrayaan-1

 

 

A look back on India’s first triumph in its lunar exploration, titled Chandrayaan-1. Read the full article in Wikipedia.

One reason why India should really be proud of: discovery of lunar water. Read the excerpt here:

On 24 September 2009 Science magazine reported that the Moon Mineralogy Mapper (M3) on Chandrayaan-1 had detected water on the Moon. But, on 25 September 2009, ISRO announced that the MIP, another instrument on board Chandrayaan-1 had discovered water on the moon just before impact and had discovered it 3 months before NASA’s M3. The announcement of this discovery was not made until NASA confirmed it.

M3 detected absorption features near 2.8–3.0 µm on the surface of the Moon. For silicate bodies, such features are typically attributed to hydroxyl– and/or water-bearing materials. On the Moon, the feature is seen as a widely distributed absorption that appears strongest at cooler high latitudes and at several fresh feldspathic craters. The general lack of correlation of this feature in sunlit M3 data with neutron spectrometer H abundance data suggests that the formation and retention of OH and H2O is an ongoing surficial process. OH/H2O production processes may feed polar cold traps and make the lunar regolith a candidate source of volatiles for human exploration.