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Second orbit raising of India’s Mars mission successful

Chennai, Nov 9 (): Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) successfully performed second orbit raising manoeuvre of India’s Mars Orbiter spacecraft on Friday which was launched on Tuesday.

ISRO official in a statement said, “The second orbit raising manoeuvre of Mars Orbiter Spacecraft, starting at 02:18:51 hours (IST) on November 8, with a burn time of 570.6 seconds has been successfully completed.”

ISRO Telemetry, Tracking and Command Network (ISTRAC) station at Bangalore raised the spacecraft’s apogee with its commands to the 440 Newton engine on the spacecraft from 28,814 km to 40,186 km, with a burn time of 570.6 seconds.

The 1,350-kg Mangalyaan Orbiter was injected on Tuesday successfully by ISRO PSLV C25 into orbit around Earth in 44 minutes after the launch at 2.38 PM from the Satish Dhawan Space Centre.

To gradually increase its apogee (point furthest away from Earth), there would be five firings of the 440 Newton engine on the board of the Mars Orbiter PSLVC25.

On Thursday the first “orbit-raising manoeuvre” was successfully performed by ISRO officials. The first orbit-raising manoeuvre was achieved on Indian physicist C V Raman’s birthday.

The third orbit-raising process will take place on November 9 to boost the apogee from 40,186 km to 70,656 km. The fourth and fifth orbit-raising operation would be on November 11 and 16 to raise the apogee to 1,00,000 km and 1,92,000 km.

The final and sixth firing will be performed on December 1 when the spacecraft will be sent out of the earth’s orbit into a sun-centric orbit. This “crucial event” of the trans-Mars injection will take place around 12.42 a.m on December 1.

After this event, the spacecraft would start its long and difficult voyage towards Mars for almost 300 days and approach Mars.

According to the Indian space agency, all the systems of the Orbiter are functioning normally. “Ever day and everything is crucial in this mission,” said ISRO’s spokesperson.