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Thursday, Nov 21, 2019

Chandrayaan-II: First illuminated image of the lunar surface released by Isro

IIRS has been employed by Isro to better understand the origin and evolution of the Moon through mapping of the lunar surface.

india Updated: Oct 17, 2019 23:18 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times, New Delhi
The first illuminated image of the lunar surface acquired by Chandrayaan 2 released by Isro
The first illuminated image of the lunar surface acquired by Chandrayaan 2 released by Isro(Isro)
         

Indian Space Research Organisation (Isro) released the first illuminated image of the lunar surface acquired by Chandrayaan 2 on Thursday. The image was taken by the lunar mission’s high resolution Imaging IR Spectrometer (IIRS) payload designed to measure the solar radiation reflected off the moon’s surface in 256 contiguous spectral bands from 100 km lunar orbit.

The image shows several craters including Sommerfield, Kirkwood and Stebbins on the northern hemisphere of earth’s only satellite. The craters are seen lit by the reflected sunlight.

IIRS has been employed by Isro to better understand the origin and evolution of the Moon through mapping of the lunar surface.

“IIRS is designed to measure the reflected sunlight and emitted part of Moon light from the lunar surface in narrow and contiguous spectral channels (bands) ranging from ~800 – 5000 nanometer (0.8-5.0 micrometer (µm)). It uses a grating to split and disperse the reflected sunlight (and emitted component) into different spectral bands,” said an Isro release.

Isro said that a preliminary analysis suggested that IIRS was successful in measuring the variations in the reflected solar radiation that bounces off the lunar surface from different kinds of surface types.

The variations in the spectral radiance were primarily due to the mineralogical/compositional variations that exist in the lunar surface and also due to the effect of space weathering said the official release.

Isro has also promised a more detailed analysis which it said is expected to yield important results on the heterogeneity of lunar surface composition.

Isro had earlier released the pictures of the Boguslawsky E Crater -- measuring about 14 km in diameter and 3 km depth -- and its surroundings in the southern polar region of the moon, clicked by the Orbiter High Resolution Camera (OHRC), mounted on the Chandrayaan-2 Orbiter. The picture was taken from a height of 100 km from the moon surface.

India’s second lunar mission was launched on July 22 and has been described as 95 per cent success by Isro chief K Siwan despite the loss of the lander minutes before landing.