India advances a step closer to the Red Planet DNA India

Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) on Wednesday unveiled its Mars Orbiter Mission (MOM) spacecraft, which is scheduled to be launched from Satish Dhawan Space Centre in Sriharikota between October 21 and November 19. The `450 crore MOM, as it has been officially named by ISRO, will be the space agency’s first interplanetary mission, and it will be launched by the Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (PSLV-XL).
Scientists and engineers at the ISRO Satellite Centre, where the spacecraft has been built, said the MOM is the most challenging space mission ever undertaken by India so far. Apart from the fact that it will take about nine months for the space craft to reach the Red Planet after leaving the Earth’s orbit (if the satellite leaves the earth orbit in November 2013, it will reach Mars in September 2014), the scientists and engineers will have the arduous task to realise related deep space mission planning and communication management at a distance of nearly 400 million km.