27 December 2009

ISRO Mars Mission

Indian Government has finally approved for the Indian Mars Mission. But the mission may take place anytime between 2018 to 2030. ISRO chairman is pretty confident that the mission will be done before 2030. I'm not sure on why ISRO needs such a long time to plan the mission. But looks like they are concentrating on the Moon and Manned Space missions for now.

Chandrayaan-2 is set to launch in 2013 with a rover (robotic car) and based on the result of C2 ISRO may plan C3 with man landing on the moon. The discussion will start only after the success of C2. Also Manned Space Mission is on the way when India may send their own astronauts to space by 2016. ISRO will only start planning the Mars mission after the success of these missions.

China has already planned their Mars mission 'Yinghuo-1' which was set to launch on October 2009??? I have no idea what happened to this mission as no website seem to mention this. Even Wikipedia says that "it will be launched on October 2009" (note the future tense).

19 December 2009

Picture of the Month - December 2009

Most of you would be familiar with the star trail images. Well, its just a photograph of the sky with the shutter opened for hours so that it can capture the trail or the movement of the stars. This image also shows the trail of the moon (you can easily guess) and also Jupiter (the bright trail very near the moon). This image also shows that the stars get dimmer as it reaches the horizon. That is because of the greater air masses at the horizon.