What if we tell you that the Chandrayaan-2 mission is still much alive? Well, hopes have revived again after a Chennai-based techie, in a tip-off to ISRO, said that Chandrayaan-2's rover Pragyan seems to be "intact" on the moon's surface and had rolled out a few meters from Vikram lander. The space agency has confirmed receiving the communication from the techie and was analyzing the same.
In a series of tweets along with the pictures of the moon surface, Shanmuga Subramanian said: "Chandrayaan-2's Pragyan "ROVER" intact on Moon's surface and has rolled out few meters from the skeleton Vikram lander whose payloads got disintegrated due to rough landing. It seems the commands were sent to the lander blindly for days and there is a distinct possibility that the lander could have received commands and relayed it to the rover...but the lander was not able to communicate it back to the Earth." There is also the possibility of the rover rolling out of the lander when it impacted the moon's surface.
Sharing a picture taken by NASA's Lunar Reconnaissance Orbital (LRO), Shanmugam said the white dot might be the skeleton lander devoid of other payloads and the black dot might be the rover. He was of the opinion that the rover may be still intact on the moon's surface. The latest pictures from LRO, dated January 4, 2020, showed rover tracks on the moon from the lander.
The techie said the debris he had found earlier might be from one of the payloads. The debris found by NASA might be from other payloads, antenna, retro braking engines, solar panels on the side, he said in a tweet.
It was on September 6 last year when Chandrayaan-2 moon orbiter attempted soft-landing near the moon's south pole. The agency tried communicating with Vikram for multiple days after the hard-landing.