Communication with India’s moon lander Vikram has been lost as it was descending towards the Moon early on Saturday, ISRO Chairman K. Sivan said.
The link was lost as the lander was at an altitude of 2.1 km over the moon’s South Pole where it was due to land
Prime Minister Narendra Modi interacted with about 70 students from across the country at the space centre here and cheered them to do well in life amid gloom over loss of contact with lunar lander Vikram while descending towards the moon on early Saturday.
“Modi asked the boys and girls from schools and colleges if they made friends and have learnt a lot from each other. He also asked them what they would tell at home when they go back about the Chandrayaan-2 mission despite a setback due to loss of communication link between Vikram and the space agency’s ground stations,” an official told IANS here.
In response, some of them told the Prime Minister that they would say the mission was almost a success but for the loss of contact with Vikram while it was descending to land on the lunar surface.
The Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) invited the students to witness Vikram landing and its rover Pragyan rolling out of it and stroll on the lunar surface near the south pole.
“Two students from each state and a couple of them from Bhutan were selected for the trip on the basis of a online quiz on space,” the official added.
The Prime Minister also told the students not to be disappointed by setbacks in life but strive hard to overcome them.
When one of the boys asked what he should do to become the country’s President, Modi quipped why not become the Prime Minister.
“Study well, work hard and have self-confidence to achieve anything in life,” Modi told the students during the brief interaction.