Mars Orbiter Mission (MOM)
August 15, 2014
Mars Orbiters Duck for Cover
Sky & Telescope
As Comet C/2013 A1 Siding Spring hurtles toward Mars, NASA is taking steps to protect its Martian orbiters. The plan? Use the planet itself as a shield between the spacecraft and the comet’s potentially dangerous debris.
As part of its long-term Mars Exploration Program, NASA currently has two spacecraft orbiting the Red Planet, Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter (MRO) and Mars Odyssey, with Mars Atmosphere and Volatile Evolution (MAVEN) set to arrive in late September. Teams of scientists at the University of Maryland, the Planetary Science Institute, and NASA’s Jet Propulsion Lab (JPL) have used data from both Earth-based and space telescopes to model Siding Spring’s journey through the inner solar system, and determined that there is no risk of the comet colliding with Mars. However, at its closest approach to Mars on October 19, 2014, Siding Spring will come within 82,000 miles of the Red Planet, which is about a third of the distance from Earth to the Moon. The closest comets ever to whiz by Earth have been at least ten times more distant.
August 11, 2014
Mars-Bound Probes Built by India and NASA Are Nearing the Red Planet
Two Mars-bound spacecraft are both in excellent health ahead of their September arrivals in orbit around the Red Planet, managers for both missions report.
India's Mars Orbiter Mission (MOM) is more than 80 percent of the way to Mars and performing well, according to a Facebook update posted July 21 by the Indian Space Research Organization. MOM is expected to enter orbit on Sept. 14.
The second craft, NASA's Mars Atmosphere and Volatile EvolutioN (MAVEN), is also performing well. MAVEN is scheduled to embark on its final approach to the Red Planet on Sept. 21, one week after MOM's arrival, principal investigator Bruce Jakosky said. After months of checkouts and tests, the spacecraft will now be left quiet until close to the big day.
June 23, 2014
India’s 1st Mars Mission Celebrates 100 Days and 100 Million Kilometers from Mars Orbit Insertion Firing – Cruising Right behind NASA’s MAVEN
India’s inaugural voyager to the Red Planet, the Mars Orbiter Mission or MOM, has just celebrated 100 days and 100 million kilometers out from Mars on June 16, until the crucial Mars Orbital Insertion (MOI) engine firing that will culminate in a historic rendezvous on September 24, 2014.
MOM is cruising right behind NASA’s MAVEN orbiter which celebrated 100 days out from Mars on Friday the 13th of June. MAVEN arrives about 48 hours ahead of MOM on September 21, 2014.
April 19, 2014
India’s First Mars Mission Midway Through Its Journey, Nearing Its Goal
September 24, 2014, is all set to be a red letter day for the Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO). On this day, India's Mars spacecraft, Mangalyaan, will enter the Red Planet's orbit. Midway through its journey, India's solo Mars mission has captured the imagination of both its citizens and the international space community. If it succeeds, it will be testimony to Indian jugaad - our unique ability to part-innovate and part-improvise - and will also affirm the country's status as an emerging space superpower.
February 19, 2014
From India, Proof That a Trip to Mars Doesn’t Have to Break the Bank
The New York Times
While India’s recent launch of a spacecraft to Mars was a remarkable feat in its own right, it is the $75 million mission’s thrifty approach to time, money and materials that is getting attention.
Just days after the launch of India’s Mangalyaan satellite, NASA sent off its own Mars mission, five years in the making, named Maven. Its cost: $671 million. The budget of India’s Mars mission, by contrast, was just three-quarters of the $100 million that Hollywood spent on last year’s space-based hit, “Gravity.”
December 18, 2013
An Updated Mars Exploration Family Portrait
The Planetary Society
The Mars Exploration Family Portrait shows every dedicated spacecraft mission to Mars, and now includes India’s Mars Orbiter Mission and NASA's MAVEN. The dates listed are for launch.
December 2, 2013
India’s First Mars Probe ‘MOM’ Blasts Free of Earth Joining MAVEN in Race to Red Planet
India’s first ever Mars probe ‘MOM’ successfully fired its main engine today (Dec. 1), blasting the craft free of the Earth’s sphere of influence forever to begin her nearly yearlong momentous voyage to the Red Planet.
Indian space engineers initiated the 440 Newton liquid fueled engine firing precisely as planned at 00:49 hrs (IST) on Sunday, Dec. 1, 2013 during a critical nail-biting burn lasting some 22 minutes.
The Trans Mars Insertion (TMI) firing propelled India’s Mars Orbiter Mission (MOM) away from Earth forever and placed the spacecraft on course for a rendezvous with the Red Planet on September 24, 2014 – where it will study the atmosphere and sniff for signals of methane.
Sunday’s Mars insertion burn imparted the vehicle with an incremental velocity of 647.96 meters per second (m/sec) consuming 198 kg of fuel.
November 22, 2013
Op/Ed: Why India Is Going to Mars
The New York Times
If you want to marry in India and are looking for a bride or groom, normally you need to consult an astrologer, to learn whether the position of the planet Mars is favorable on your birth chart. If not, you may find it difficult to get the match of your choice. Lately, some employers have been trying this as well, matching their horoscopes with those of their prospective employees; companies are also comparing horoscopes with their clients for good fortune. The influence of Mars and the other planets on the life of an average Indian cannot be forgotten, especially this month. On Nov. 5, a Tuesday — Mangalvaar in Hindi, named for the planet Mars — India launched its first mission to the red planet. The day before, the chairman of the Indian Space Research Organization paid a visit to a temple, to seek the blessings of Lord Venkateswara. If the mission is successful, the Mars Orbiter will study the planet’s atmosphere and mineralogy, map its surface and test for methane, a possible sign of the presence of life.
November 5, 2013
Why India's Mars Mission Is So Much Cheaper Than NASA's
Former NASA Administrator Daniel Goldin pioneered a "faster, better, cheaper" approach to America's space program, but he would have been hard-pressed to deliver a Mars mission for the bargain-basement price of India's first probe to the red planet, which blasted off Tuesday.
"India's Mars mission, with a budget of $73 million, is far cheaper than comparable missions including NASA's $671 million Maven satellite that is expected to set off for Mars later in November," reports The Wall Street Journal, which is among several publications noting the disparity between the cost of U.S. space missions and India's burgeoning program.
Even the project director of India's Mars orbiter mission has been quick to tout his country's frugality in space:
Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO)
"This is less than one-tenth of what the U.S. has spent on their Mars mission Maven," S. Arunan told reporters at a pre-launch news conference last week, according to Al-Jazeera, which added that "the cost-effectiveness of the mission is indeed turning out to be the highlight of the project, almost eclipsing the other aspects."
India Mars Orbiter Mission Status Center
India's Mars Orbiter Mission's little-known facts
At 2:38 pm on November 5, 2013 a Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle-C25 will lift off from Sriharikota spaceport with the aim of reaching the red planet Mars. If the mission is successful then the PSLV-C25 will travel for almost 300 days, cover 680 million kilometres and reach Mars on September 24, 2014.
The mission will catapult the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) into a select list of countries to have sent a mission to Mars successfully. ISRO would be the fourth space agency in the world to have sent a mission to Mars. European Space Agency (ESA) of European consortium, National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) of the US and Roscosmos of Russia are the only three agencies which have so far sent their missions to the red planet. Only 21 of the total of 51 missions sent to Mars by various countries have been successful.
November 4, 2013
India's 450-crore mission to Mars to begin today: 10 facts
India is aiming to join the world's deep-space pioneers with a journey to Mars that starts today and costs 73 million dollars or Rs. 450 crores.
Countdown Commences for India’s Mars Orbiter Mission (MOM)
The countdown has commenced and the excitement is building for India’s Mars Orbiter Mission (MOM) – which will conduct a detailed study of the Martian atmosphere and is the nation’s first ever mission to the Red Planet.
The 56 hour 30 min countdown started at 6:06 a.m. IST today (Nov. 3), according to an official statement from the Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO) leading to liftoff on Tuesday, Nov 5, from a seaside launch pad in Srihanikota, India.
MOM is the first of two new Mars orbiter science probes from Earth set to blast off for the Red Planet this November. Half a globe away, NASA’s MAVEN orbiter remains on target to launch barely two weeks after MOM on Nov. 18 – from the Florida Space Coast.
October 22, 2013
ISRO's Orbiter, NASA's Maven may 'cruise together' to Mars
The Times of India
India's preparations for its ambitious mission to the Red Planet are proceeding almost simultaneously with the American project on similar lines. On Sunday, ISRO completed the process of mating the 1,340kg Mars Orbiter with the Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle, marking a major step in the Rs 450-crore mission. An ISRO official told TOI that the process began on October 18.
On Monday, American space agency NASA moved the Atlas V rocket's payload to the clean room in preparation for the mating of the spacecraft-Mars Atmosphere And Volatile Evolution Mission (Maven)-with the launcher, which is scheduled to start in early November. ISRO's next step will be the closure of the heat-shield on Tuesday, when the launch authorization board will also reconvene at Sriharikota to firm up the launch date.
October 21, 2013
ISRO Mars Mission Launch Delayed as Pacific Storms Delay Main Tracking Ship Sent to Fiji
The launch of the Mars Orbiter Mission will be delayed further owing to storms in the Pacific Ocean, which are affecting two major ships being sent to Fiji to track the trajectory of the PSLV launch with the payload for Mars Orbiter Mission.
However, the launch window is open from October 28 to November 19 and ISRO will launch the Mars Mission anytime during this period.
The main tracking ship MV SCI Nalanda is on its way to Fiji in the Pacific and is now expected to reach on Monday while the second ship Yamuna is already there.
The ships are crucial for tracking and relaying real-time data about the last stages of the launch to release the spacecraft, which will happen over the South Pacific.
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