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India’s lunar mission in 2007: ISRO

Indian Space Research Organisation’s unmanned lunar mission will be launched in 2007 as scheduled, ISRO chairman P Madhavan Nair said in Chennai.

ISRO had also designed a special three stage-tracking network to monitor the mission, when the spacecraft was in orbit. A special ground station had been designed and would come up near Bangalore, he said.

The spacecraft would keep on circling the moon and would send data, he said, adding a small equipment in the spacecraft would detach itself and descend to the moon surface. This would also send data.

ISRO would also launch a Carto Satellite from Sriharikota by end of March or in early April this year. This would help mapping the landmass of the country. In the second half of this year, ISRO would be launching another Carto Satellite, with a one-metre fine resolution camera fitted to it, Nair said.

ISRO was developing a total disaster management support system, which would be operational very soon. Images got from the satellites would be analysed and passed to the disaster management control room under the system, he said.

ISRO would set up 200 remote sensing centres in remote areas of the country, which would enable a better networking of information system on cyclone warnings and floods. Earlier, Madhavan Nair was conferred the National Science and Technology Award, instituted by the Jeppiaar Educational Trust.

The award, carrying a citation and Rs one lakh cash, was conferred on him by Dr K Kasthurirangan, MP and director, National Institute of Advanced Studies, Bangalore. In his acceptance speech, Nair said while tsunami prediction was not a matured sceience, the country could use satellite remote sensing and aerial photography capabilities to provide needed information for relief and rehabilitation work.