Monday, June 30, 2008

India's first mission to moon -- Chandrayan-I -- is tentatively scheduled to be launched on September 19 this year, Indian Space Research Organisation Chairman Madhavan Nair told newsmen in Hyderabad on Friday.

He said that all the preparations have been nearly completed and the exact date of the launch will be decided within a month. He described September 19 as the 'earliest opportunity' for the historic launch.

The final stage of integration of instruments with the spacecraft was going on and test and evaluation was also in progress.

"The mission to moon, apart from other things, will help to map the moon," Nair said.

Nair was confident that Chandrayan I will expand the scientific knowledge about the moon and also upgrade the technological capability of India. "In the next four years, India will be among the most developed nations in space research and development," he said, pointing out that the launch of ten satellites simultaneously two months ago was a demonstration of this capability.


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