Chandrayaan 2’s lander has been located after scientists lost communication Saturday morning, India’s space agency said Sunday.
Vikram, the lander, was lost when it was attempting a “soft” or controlled landing near the south pole of the Moon where scientists believe there could be water ice. Communication was lost just as it was about to touch down, the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) had said.
ISRO chief K Sivan said Sunday that Vikram had been located. The “orbiter has clicked a thermal image of (the) lander nut there is no communication yet. We are trying to have contact. It will be communicated soon,” he told Business Standard.
Sivan separately told news agency PTI Vikram “must-have” had a hard-landing” on the lunar surface.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi hinted in an address to the nation Saturday that the lander might have traveled at a higher-than-expected speed and crash-landed on the Moon.
“If historians someday write about today’s incident, they will certainly say that inspired by our romantic description of the moon throughout life, Chandrayaan, in the last leg of the journey, rushed to embrace the moon,” he said.
“I can proudly say that the effort was worth it and so was the journey,” Modi said.