Rain or shine, India’s moon mission will keep its Oct 22 date

October 11th, 2008 - 8:27 pm ICT by IANS  

ISROSriharikota (Andhra Pradesh), Oct 11 (IANS) Come rain or shine, India’s maiden moon mission will be launched from here Oct 22 as scheduled, officials said. Except for a a severe cyclone, the Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (PSLV) C11 will blast off from the second launch pad at the Satish Dhawan Space Centre (SDSC) here as scheduled.

“A seven-member team of weather experts from the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO), the Indian Meteorological Department and form overseas will be formed to monitor and study the weather data six days prior to the launch date,” SDSC director M.C. Dathan told reporters.

According to S. Krishnamurthy, general manager (safety), “only a severe cyclone will make us rethink on the launch.”

Meanwhile, launch preparations for Chandrayaan-1 are proceeding at a hectic pace here.

Dathan said preparatory work on the Chandrayaan satellite was on. “On Sunday we will do gas charging and propellant filling. The fuel filling will take three days.”

The spacecraft will be mated with the rocket on Oct 14 to be followed by four days of testing. On Oct 18 the fully loaded rocket will be moved to the second launch pad, where again various tests will be conducted for four days before it is launched on Oct 22 at 6.20 a.m.

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