A day after NASA announced that it has located Chandrayaan 2's Vikram lander on the lunar surface three months after it went incommunicado, ISRO has said that it had located the lander way back in September. "Our own orbiter had located Vikram Lander, we had already declared that on our website, you can go back and see," said Sivan while speaking to reporters on Tuesday.
ISRO, had on September 10, tweeted that the lander Vikram has been found. "Vikram Lander has been located by the orbiter of Chandrayaan 2, but no communication with it yet. All possible efforts are being made to establish communication with lander," it had tweeted at 10:20 am on September 10.
All possible efforts are being made to establish communication with lander.#ISRO- ISRO (@isro) September 10, 2019
NASA on Tuesday said that it had found the remains of the lander and credited Chennai techie Shanmuga Subramanium for his assistance. On December 3, NASA claimed that the lander was discovered by its Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter. "The Chandrayaan 2 Vikram lander has been found by our NASA Moon mission, the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter. See the first mosaic of the impact site," it tweeted.
"Green dots indicate spacecraft debris (confirmed or likely). Blue dots locate disturbed soil, likely where small bits of the spacecraft churned up the regolith. "S" indicates debris identified by Shanmuga Subramanian," a statement by the agency had said.
NASA had also written to Subramanian for his contribution to the discovery of the lander. "Thank you for your mail informing us of your discovery of debris from the Vikram lander. The LROC team confirmed that the location does exhibit changes in images taken before and after the date of the landing. Using this information the LROC team did additional searches in this area and located the site of the primary impact as well as other debris around the impact location and has announced the sighting on the NASA and ASU pages where you have been given credit for your observation," mentioned the mail from NASA to the techie that he shared on social media.
NASA stated that the Vikram lander debris was discovered at about 750 metres northwest of the main crash site where it made a hard landing.
The lander Vikram was scheduled to soft-land on the far side of the Moon on September 7 but all communication with it was lost minutes before its landing. NASA had made several attempts to locate the Vikram lander since then.
ISRO is aiming for another lunar mission in November next year.