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India is going to Mars

Great news for all the space buffs, India's first-ever Mars probe has been launched to begin the countries very first interplanetary mission.

  Author: Spaceman | Source: space.com | 6th November 2013  

Yesterday (November 5, 2013) was a day to remember. Indian Space Research Organisation successfully launched the Mangalyaan orbiter toward the Red Planet on top of a Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle to begin the country's very first interplanetary mission.

The Mars Orbiter Mission took off from the Satish Dnawan Space Center in Sriharikota and if everything goes according to plan, the Mangalyaan (Hindi for Mars Craft) probe will arrive at the Red Planet on September 24, 2014, which will make India the fourth country after US, Soviet Union and Europe (I know, it's not a country) to successfully bring a spacecraft to Mars.

The Mangalyaan orbiter is worth $73.5 million and weighs 2,980 pounds (1,350 kilograms) and this are the tools the spacecraft is carrying:

- Lyman Alpha Photometer used to measure the loss process of water from the planet.    
- Thermal Infrared Imaging Spectrometer to create a map of the Martian surface.    
- Mars Exospheric Neutral Composition Analyzer to study Mars' atmosphere.    
- Mars Color Camera to take pictures of Mars' surfaces and Martian weather events.
- The camera will also take photos of moons of Mars, Phobos and Deimos.    
- Methane Sensor for Mars will search for methane in the atmosphere of Mars.


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