India’s globally acclaimed Mars Orbiter Mission (MOM) spacecraft also known as Mangalyaan has completed one year of the mission life around Mars on 24 September 2015. During the entire one year, the spacecraft had acquired a large set of data of the red planet using all five payloads mounted on it by completing more than 120 orbits.
To mark first anniversary of MOM, Ahmedabad based Space Applications Centre (SAC) of Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) released Mar Atlas mobile application. Mar Atlas contains compilation of photos taken at varying spatial resolutions by the Mars Colour Camera (MCC) fitted on board of the spacecraft. It also contains results obtained by other payload results in a form of scientific atlas.
About Mars Orbiter Mission (MOM) :
Mangalyaan is indigenously designed, built and launched by ISRO in record period of less than two years in 450 crore rupees (73 million US dollars) budget which is considered as cheapest inter-planetary mission till date to reach Mars. The spacecraft has five instruments mounted on it for collecting scientific data of Mar’s morphology, atmospheric processes, surface temperature, surface geology and atmospheric escape process. These five instruments are Lyman-Alpha Photometer (LAP), Methane Sensor for Mars (MSM), Mars Exospheric Neutral Composition Analyser (MENCA), Thermal Infrared Imaging Spectrometer (TIS) and Mars Colour Camera (MCC)
Launch Details :
The MOM spacecraft had entered into the orbit of Mars on the night of 23 September 2014 after it was launched on 5 November 2013 from Satish Dhawan Space Centre using a Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (PSLV) rocket C25. It had reached the red planet just two days after NASA’s Mars Atmosphere and Volatile Evolution probe (MAVEN) reached Mars orbit.
In September 2014, India created a space history by becoming first nation in the world to successfully launch interplanetary mission to Mars in maiden attempt. ISRO also become first Asian and fourth space agency in the world to reach Mars orbit after the Roscosmos of Russia, NASA and European Space Agency.
ISRO for its enormous success was conferred 2014 Indira Gandhi Peace Prize for Peace, Disarmament and Develeopment. The team of ISRO’s Mars Orbiter programme team was conferred with prestigious 2015 Space Pioneer Award in the Science and Engineering category by National Space Society (NSS).