Mars probe's orbit raised, all systems normal

By Indo Asian News Service | Thursday, November 07, 2013 | 4:14:05 PM IST (+05:30 GMT) Comment 0 Comment

Chennai, Nov 7 (IANS) The first of the six orbit raising manouevres for the Mars Orbiter was successfully completed early Thursday morning, the Indian space agency said.

Chennai, Nov 7 (IANS) The first of the six orbit raising manouevres for the Mars Orbiter was successfully completed early Thursday morning, the Indian space agency said.

According to Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO), the first orbit raising manouevre that started 1.17 a.m. Thursday has been successfully completed.

The on-board motor of Mars Orbiter was fired for 416 seconds with the commands issued from Spacecraft Control Centre (SCC) at ISRO Telemetry, Tracking and Command Network (ISTRAC) in Bangalore, a statement from the Indian space agency said.

"With this engine firing, the spacecraft's apogee (farthest point to the Earth) has been raised to 28,825 km, while its perigee (nearest point to the Earth) is at 252 km," the statement added.

ISRO launched the Mars Orbiter in earth orbit Tuesday. The spacecraft was placed at an elliptical earth orbit with a perigee of 248.4 km and an apogee of 23,550 km, inclined at an angle of 19.27 degrees to the equator.

The 1,340-kg Mars Orbiter, developed by ISRO at an outlay of around Rs.150 crore, carries 852 kg of fuel on-board. Around 360 kg fuel was likely to be expended on the six orbit raising activities.

During the final orbit raising activity, the Orbiter will be put on Mars Transfer Trajectory Dec 1.

According to ISRO, the Mars Orbiter will travel to the vicinity of the Red Planet in September 2014 after 300 days of deep space voyage.

When the Orbiter is near Mars, the spacecraft's motors will be fired again but in reverse direction to slow it down and let it captured by Martian gravity into an orbit around it, ISRO said.

According to the Indian space agency, all the systems of the Orbiter are functioning normally.

India's first inter-planetary Mars Orbiter Mission costs around Rs.450 crore.

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