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Unmanned Spaceflight.com > Mars & Missions > Orbiters > ISRO Mars Orbiter Mission
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Paolo
according to the Chinese Xinhua press agency an Indian Mars probe may be launched in 2013 or 2015, after Chandrayaan-2
http://news.xinhuanet.com/english/2009-08/...nt_11972334.htm
Paolo
finally, some info on the proposed Indian Mars mission
http://www.asianscientist.com/topnews/isro...ed-planet-2013/
2013 is probably too early, 2016 or 2018 may be more realistic.
and Chandrayaan was not that successful, after all...
tolis
While no-one was watching (or had their eyes on Curiosity)
the Indian government approved a national mission to Mars:

http://physicsworld.com/cws/article/news/2...mission-in-2013

Vital statistics:

Launch on PSLV-XL in Nov 2013
500kg, 25kg payload to "..study the planet's geology and climate.."
Highly elliptical orbit around Mars

Good stuff.

Tolis.
antipode
Hmmm, any way to get an Electra comms package onboard?

ph34r.gif

P
tolis
Some new info regarding the Indian Mars Probe


From the following article

http://articles.timesofindia.indiatimes.co...methane-mystery

one can infer that one of the science objectives is to look for methane and its sources.


From this

http://www.deccanchronicle.com/channels/sc...genous-isro-217


we learn that no foreign involvement (instruments etc) is foreseen. There is also a reference to the probe as "Mangalyaan"
which makes sense I guess ("Mangala" is one of the words for "Mars" in Sanskrit?).

Tolis.
Doc
From that last article, they hint at the possibility of still having a 2013 launch though there may not be one until 2016.

I'm surprised ISRO has already declared it to be an 'indigneous' mission. They could have solicited a foreign surface package for a light-weight lander to maximise science return.
Paolo
QUOTE (Doc @ Sep 9 2012, 07:06 PM) *
I'm surprised ISRO has already declared it to be an 'indigneous' mission.


apparently, there are strong political motivations behind the mission. I will not violate forum rules, go have a look to the thread on the nasaspaceflight forum
Paolo
this is interesting http://www.firstpost.com/tech/indias-mars-...013-459232.html

QUOTE
“As in the case of Chandrayaan-1, we will have to take the spacecraft first into the earth’s orbit from 22,000 km to 200,000 km in stages using the propulsion system and fire the rocket’s liquid apogee motor to push it into the Martian orbit after cruising about 300 days”


this looks like the mission profile of the Soviet Fobos missions, of Mars 96 and Fobos-Grunt
tolis
QUOTE (Paolo @ Sep 18 2012, 07:59 AM) *
this is interesting http://www.firstpost.com/tech/indias-mars-...013-459232.html



this looks like the mission profile of the Soviet Fobos missions, of Mars 96 and Fobos-Grunt



..as well as Chang'e 1.

When your propulsion system is not very powerful or very accurate,
it is preferable to split large burns into segments (when possible).
This prevents large "gravity losses" (for long burns) and gives
the mission time to measure and correct any under/over burns.

In a nutshell: it saves fuel, when there is not much to spare.

Tolis.


rlorenz
QUOTE (tolis @ Sep 18 2012, 11:24 AM) *
When your propulsion system is not very powerful or very accurate,
it is preferable to split large burns into segments (when possible).
This prevents large "gravity losses" (for long burns) and gives
the mission time to measure and correct any under/over burns.

I suppose it also makes you more resilient to any pressurization issues, as
in when your nominally regulated system starts operating in blowdown mode,
as Akatsuki did (in effect)
tolis
Indians are cutting (and joining) metal for their orbiter:


http://www.flightglobal.com/news/articles/...orbiter-376942/
tolis
A nice summing up of the current state of india's Mars orbiter project by Emily Lakdawalla:

http://www.planetary.org/blogs/emily-lakda...aan-update.html


For what it's worth, I think that, although the mission development timeframe does seem awfully short, there are also
some reasons to be optimistic:

1. There are indications, eg the delivery of the spacecraft structure, that work on the project began long before the formal
announcement of the mission.


2. Such a fast schedule is not unheard of. The Mariner 9 mission, the US's first Mars orbiter,
was launched in May 1971, 2.5 yr after the formal project start in November 1968. One could argue
that, with a Moon orbiter under its belt, India is in a similar stage in its planetary programme.


3. The technical complexity of the mission, although formidable in absolute terms (it is, after all, a mission to Mars) is
actually quite modest as planetary missions go. The goal is to attain a highly elliptical orbit around Mars and conduct
observations of the planet from this orbit. The one critical maneuvre of the mission (assuming that is is dispatched
from Earth without problems) is a well-timed engine burn near closest approach to the planet on the first pass.
There is no probe to land, no major orbit changes, rendezvous with either one of the moons or sample return.
This is no Phobos-Grunt, more like a Mars Express sans Beagle 2.

So, I would say that there is better than a 50-50 chance of it getting to where it wants to go. Of course, in the real world
it is impossible to fly, say, 10,000 identical missions to see what the actual probability of success is (that's why we have
bayesian statistics, by the way laugh.gif ) but I remain cautiously optimistic about this one.

Tolis.
mcaplinger
QUOTE (tolis @ Sep 30 2012, 01:08 PM) *
2. Such a fast schedule is not unheard of. The Mariner 9 mission, the US's first Mars orbiter,
was launched in May 1971, 2.5 yr after the formal project start in November 1968.

There's rather a large difference between 2.5 years and 1.3 years, though it's not clear when Mangalyaan actually started. Also, Mariner Mars 1971 was a direct follow-on to the Mariner 6-7 flyby missions with a lot of heritage, see http://history.nasa.gov/SP-4212/ch6.html

I wish them the best, but it's just not a lot of time.
Paolo
QUOTE (mcaplinger @ Sep 30 2012, 11:43 PM) *
Also, Mariner Mars 1971 was a direct follow-on to the Mariner 6-7 flyby missions with a lot of heritage,


I suspect that Mangalyaan also has a lot of heritage from Chandrayaan. In the structure at least (hopefully not in the thermal control system as well)
elakdawalla
To be fair, the Moon's is a much more challenging thermal environment than Mars'. I think.
mcaplinger
QUOTE (elakdawalla @ Sep 30 2012, 10:43 PM) *
To be fair, the Moon's is a much more challenging thermal environment than Mars'. I think.

That's certainly true. We ended up using every trick in the book to get LROC to perform in a low lunar orbit.
gndonald
Emily has posted an update on this one, the instruments have been selected and they hope to have them ready for March. I'm going to wish the Indians as much luck as they need for this mission. I'll be happy to see them get the probe onto a Earth - Mars trajectory.

http://www.planetary.org/blogs/emily-lakda...ars-update.html

In regards the launch profile, I can remember reading somewhere that for countries like India & China that initial 22,000 km orbit is easier to reach because their launch vehicles are optimised for putting communications satellites into that orbit.
Paolo
there was a very short story in Science yesterday (for those having access it's here
just one sentence to retain:

QUOTE
the Indian Space Research Organisation notes that the tiny satellite is "more of a technological mission than a science mission."


there is also a detailed list of instruments on NASAspaceflight forum
note that the Indian methane detector is said to be

QUOTE
designed to measure methane in the Martian atmosphere with ppb accuracy


i think this is about the same capability as the spectrometer on Mars Express. TGO, IIRC should go for part-per-trillion accuracy
machi
Here is source with short article about electro-optical payload of the Indian Mars mission.
You can find that article quickly by using ctrl+f and simply find "MCC".

Mars Colour Camera is refractor design and it has resolution 25 m/pix (50 microrad) from distance 500 km
It has 2K×2K CCD with RGB Bayer filter for visible light between 0.4 to 0.7 microns.
Frame size is 50×50 km from perigee and 8,000×8,000 km from apogee.

Methane Sensor for Mars (MSM) is Fabry-Perot interferometer with ppb detection limit for methane. It works in narrow SWIR window (1642-1658 nm).

Thermal Infra-Red Imaging Specrometer (TIS) is grating spectrometer with uncooled microbolometer array for TIR between 7 to 14 microns.


tolis
The high apocentre makes it - in principle - capable of flying by Deimos.
Neither MEX nor the other orbiters currently operating around Mars
can approach that moon.
Cosmic Penguin
A paper on the mission to be presented on the 44th LPSC: http://www.lpi.usra.edu/meetings/lpsc2013/pdf/2760.pdf

Edit: Another poster about the spacecraft seen at the Aero India 2013 Expo:

Click to view attachment
SFJCody
I notice that this is scheduled to arrive at Mars a month before C/2013 A1 (Siding Spring) which has a current nominal flyby distance of 100,000 km (likely to change significantly as the arc length increases). I wonder whether it would be possible to engineer some sort of flyby following orbit insertion? I imagine this is either impossible or would require the expenditure of much more propellant than ISRO would be prepared to sacrifice.
Explorer1
Way too many factors to consider right now. If anything, MAVEN be the most suited to getting a whiff of the tail, given its instruments being specialized for rarefied gases. Would instrument commissioning even been done for either spacecraft that soon after arrival?
And of course, it's really up to the comet to decide where to pass and how much volatiles to emit...
jsheff
The latest on this mission:

Indian Mars Mission news:

John Sheff
Cambridge, MA
Paolo
almost everything you wanted to know about MOM http://rd.springer.com/content/pdf/10.1007...22-1521-9_5.pdf
Explorer1
Looks like there's a concern about Siding Spring's tail interfering with methane measurements; their instrument could confuse cometary material with Mars-originating emissions. Given how quickly methane is destroyed by the sun, would it really be much of a problem, even if some ended up in the atmosphere?
Doug M.
Emily Lakdawalla has another post up on this. Key grafs:

QUOTE
Meanwhile, in India, the Deccan Herald reports that the integration of the Mars Orbiter Mission's Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (PSLV) has begun. At the same time, payload integration is proceeding: all five science instruments are now with the spacecraft in Bangalore. The completed spacecraft will be delivered to India's launch facility in Sriharikota in mid-August for its November launch. That seems like a mighty short time for payload integration. On the other hand, the payload isn't really the point on this mission; India's first deep space operations is the point...

The original plan had been to launch the Mars mission on India's next-generation heavy-lift launch vehicle, the Geosynchronous Satellite Launch Vehicle (GSLV), but delays and one launch disaster have meant that the GSLV has still not yet had a successful flight. India had to choose between delaying to 2016 or launching on the much smaller PSLV. The PSLV cannot send a spacecraft directly on an interplanetary trajectory; it will launch a downsized Mars Orbiter Mission, carrying a 15-kilogram science payload, into Earth orbit, and an upper stage will widen the spacecraft's orbit through multiple boosts into ever-larger ellipses until finally injecting it toward Mars a month later. Once at Mars, the same procedure will operate in reverse, but mass limitations will prevent the spacecraft from carrying enough fuel to bring it down into a low orbit. Instead, it will be in an elliptical orbit with a distant periapsis.


Doug M.
QUOTE (Paolo @ Jul 24 2013, 07:02 PM) *
almost everything you wanted to know about MOM http://rd.springer.com/content/pdf/10.1007...22-1521-9_5.pdf


Almost everything... doesn't have anything to say about the Mars orbit. We know from other sources that it will be a polar orbit with a very high apoapsis.

It does mention that a lot of components are being reused from Chandrayaan, as people had already guessed. Also that nominal mission would be six months from arrival in Mars orbit.


Doug M.
elakdawalla
Doug, it's been pointed out to me that I made some errors in the paragraph about the GSLV; I've edited my original post slightly. Sorry about that. (GSLV has had successful flights, though not many; recent failure had to do with a cryogenic upper stage).

This article says that orbit altitude will vary from 385 to 80,000 km, FWIW. That apoapsis is roughly 4 times farther from Mars' center than Deimos' orbit.
Doug M.
QUOTE (elakdawalla @ Jul 30 2013, 01:36 AM) *
Doug, it's been pointed out to me that I made some errors in the paragraph about the GSLV; I've edited my original post slightly. Sorry about that. (GSLV has had successful flights, though not many; recent failure had to do with a cryogenic upper stage).

This article says that orbit altitude will vary from 385 to 80,000 km, FWIW. That apoapsis is roughly 4 times farther from Mars' center than Deimos' orbit.



Okay! Thanks, Emily.

In theory, Mangalyaan could come fairly close to Deimos. In practice, hoot, who knows. I would imagine that if they arrive in Mars orbit with a little bit of fuel left to play with, a Deimos flyby would at least be discussed.

The gentleman in the article is upset because Mangalyaan is turning out to be more of a technological proof-of-concept than an actual scientific mission. And I can see the force of that. On the other hand, there's precedent; Pathfinder and Sojourner were test beds for lander and rover technology. (As it turned out, they ended up performing much better than expected and delivered some respectable science.)


Doug M.
bobik
MOM Martian orbit parameters:

MOI Epoch: 24-09-2014, 02:34
Periapsis: 365.3 km
Apoapsis: 80000 km
Inclination: 150.0°
AOP: 203.5°
RAAN: 61.4°
Period: 76.72 hr
Sun Elevation: 6.8°

http://www.isro.org/pslv-c25/pdf/pslv-c25-brochure.pdf

bobik
It seems that the Thermal Infrared Imaging Spectrometer (TIS) has a spectral range of 7-14 μm and a spectral resolution of 580 nm (THEMIS: 6.8-14.9 μm and ~1 μm, respectively). Bhatt et al., 2013
Phil Stooke
From the Deccan Herald today:

"“We hope to observe Phobos, but not the other one, Diemos, as it is too tiny,” V Adimurthy, senior adviser of interplanetary missions at Isro, told Deccan Herald."

Too bad - Phobos is very well imaged already, Deimos is poorly covered by images especially at high resolution. We really need to see more of it. Even the shape model is very uncertain on the trailing side. China's ill-fated orbiter launched with Phobos-Grunt was going to look at it (I was told personally by a person involved with it). Maybe we will have to wait for the next Chinese orbiter suggested to fly in 2018.

Phil
Explorer1
Is there a link to the webcast? It's t-7 hours, and the facebook page mentions there will be one, but the ISRO site just shows an old link...
elakdawalla
The website says the webcast will begin at 14:00 IST, which is to say, not for roughly 5 hours.
Explorer1
I see it now; thanks. Now to wait.
Amazing that a Mars probe can go from first announcement to launch day in only three pages on this of all forums! (not a criticism of anyone, just noting a consequence of the lack of info until the past few weeks)
elakdawalla
Yeah. I do have to say that they're making up for lost time with their Facebook page. Lots of info and high-resolution photos.
Explorer1
Spaceflightnow has the stream starting.
Definitely a different vibe on the preshow from NASA press conferences wink.gif

jamescanvin
FYI. I'm finding the mobile video stream from spaceflightnow much more reliable than the desktop feed which was very glitchy for me.

2 mins ...
Explorer1
Liftoff!

And coasting...
Hope to see good news tomorrow morning.
Astro0
Launch!

Click to view attachment
Bjorn Jonsson
So far so good. The liquid fueled fourth stage has ignited. Hopefully everything works...
nprev
Successfully made initial parking orbit, looking good thus far.
Doug M.
QUOTE (Explorer1 @ Nov 5 2013, 05:35 AM) *
I see it now; thanks. Now to wait.
Amazing that a Mars probe can go from first announcement to launch day in only three pages on this of all forums! (not a criticism of anyone, just noting a consequence of the lack of info until the past few weeks)


It hasn't attracted a lot of attention in mainstream media, either. I'd say this is one part India having been rather tight-lipped (reasonable, given that it's their first effort and fingers are crossed) and two parts it not fitting any convenient narrative. India launched a Mars probe... wait, India? Huh?

(Prediction: if China's Moon landing succeeds next month, we will see much, much more media coverage. Because that's going to fit a couple of different narratives really well.)



Doug M.
Doug M.
QUOTE (Bjorn Jonsson @ Nov 5 2013, 11:48 AM) *
So far so good. The liquid fueled fourth stage has ignited. Hopefully everything works...


As of 3 AM EST Tuesday, all systems are nominal. They're going to do their first orbital adjustment later today. Fingers crossed!


Doug M.
tolis
QUOTE (bobik @ Nov 2 2013, 08:48 AM) *
MOM Martian orbit parameters:

MOI Epoch: 24-09-2014, 02:34
Periapsis: 365.3 km
Apoapsis: 80000 km
Inclination: 150.0°
AOP: 203.5°
RAAN: 61.4°
Period: 76.72 hr
Sun Elevation: 6.8°

http://www.isro.org/pslv-c25/pdf/pslv-c25-brochure.pdf


On the subject of satellite flybys, from the above elements it seems that the orbit crosses the Martian equatorial plane
- where the satellites orbit - at distances from Mars' center of 44,400 km (going south to north) and 3,900 km (going north to south).
So, at least initially the spacecraft can not come particularly close to either of the moons. Later, as the orbit orientation changes due to the action
of the Sun's gravity and Mars' non-spherical shape, encounters with either moon will become possible. Of course, there is no guarantee that the
spacecraft will still be alive then.

walfy
Looks like India's MOM probe can be tracked here: http://www.n2yo.com/?s=39370

Also this link with more info: http://www.n2yo.com/satellite/?s=39370

As it nears its apogee of 28,746.0 km high, there's some projected retrograde motion for it's relative path on Earth's surface, for slowing way down up there, I'm assuming, and Earth's spin overtaking it's orbital speed.

Click to view attachment

Is it just coincidental that it reached apogee here just as its path reached it's northernmost part on Earth? It can reach apogee at any point along its track on Earth, and does not have to coincide with it's northern or southernmost path along the Earth, right? Probably a dumb question.
Explorer1
Being in direct contact with India is probably a boon to operations; remaining in orbit to do checkouts/adjustments prior to the Mars trip has more benefits than just a smaller rocket, in terms of signal delay, familiar environment, etc.
Why doesn't this happened more often? Launch a probe into parking orbit when it's assembled, do checkouts and instrument commissioning at a leisurely pace, and burn with your final stage to interplanetary when the appropriate window opens up.
Paolo
QUOTE (Paolo @ Jan 9 2012, 11:18 AM) *
2013 is probably too early, 2016 or 2018 may be more realistic.


I love to be proven wrong sometimes! congratulations to all involved!
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