Chandrayaan-2 Launch Called Off After “Technical Snag”: ISRO

Sriharikota: ISRO called off the launch of Chandrayaan-2 due to a “technical snag” just about 56 minutes before its blast-off on Monday. A revised countdown for India’s second unmanned mission to the Moon will be announced soon.

In a tweet, ISRO said that the snag was observed in the launch vehicle system, 56 minutes before the launch. The launch was scheduled for 2:51 am.

“It is not possible to make the launch within the launch window. Next launch schedule will be announced later,” the space agency said.

The powerful GSLV Mark III rocket was set to go up from Sriharikota in Andhra Pradesh at 2:51 am with a rover that would land on the moon in about two months’ time. However, after first being put on hold 56 minutes before blast-off, the launch was scrapped because of a “technical snag”.

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The glitch was found in the launch vehicle GSLV MKIII which is the strongest of orbit built by ISRO, and not in Chandrayaan-2 composite module. Before the countdown was stopped, ISRO’s last update about the mission said that it had completed fueling of liquid hydrogen into the rocket.

Ahead of the launch, ISRO chief K Sivan had told NDTV that the space agency has another lift-off opportunity tomorrow if it were called off today. But launch windows have to meet several technical criteria and so it could even take weeks or months for a new date.

Chandrayaan-2 was supposed to be ISRO’s first attempt to make a soft landing on the surface of the moon.

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