Data from Chandrayaan-2 Released: ISRO | 26 Dec 2020

Why in News

Recently, the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) has released the first set of data from the country's second mission to the Moon, the Chandrayaan-2, for the general public.

  • India launched Chandrayaan-2, its second lunar exploration mission after Chandrayaan-1, from Satish Dhawan Space Centre, Sriharikota on 22nd July 2019.
  • ISRO is planning mission Chandrayaan-3 in late 2021 or early 2022.

Key Points

  • Standard Requirement for Public Release of Data:
    • The Chandrayaan-2 data is required to be in the Planetary Data System-4 (PDS4) standard, and is required to be peer reviewed scientifically and technically before acceptance as PDS archives and declared ready for sharing with the global scientific community and the general public.
    • This activity has been completed and hence the first set of data from the Chandrayaan-2 mission is now being released for the wider public use through the PRADAN portal hosted by Indian Space Science Data Centre (ISSDC).
      • ISSDC is the nodal centre of planetary data archive for the planetary missions of ISRO.
  • Current Data:
    • The ISRO Science Data Archive (ISDA) currently holds data sets acquired by Chandrayaan-2 payloads from September-2019 to February-2020 from seven instruments.
      • ISDA is the long-term archive for ISRO planetary missions.
  • Data Implies:
    • All experiments have been performing well and the data received suggests excellent capability to deliver on the pre-launch promises.


  • It is an integrated 3-in-1 spacecraft of around 3,877 kg consisting of an Orbiter of the Moon, Vikram (after Vikram Sarabhai) - the lander and Pragyan (wisdom) - the rover, all equipped with scientific instruments to study the moon.
    • The Chandrayaan-2 was India's first attempt to land on the lunar surface.
    • ISRO had planned the landing on the South Pole of the lunar surface. However, the lander Vikram hard-landed in September last year. Its orbiter, which is still in the lunar orbit, has a mission life of seven years.
  • Objective:
    • Try and build on the evidence of water molecules shown by Chandrayaan-1 and study the extent and distribution of water on the Moon.
    • Study topography, seismography, composition of lunar surface and the lunar atmosphere.
      • The study of ancient rocks and craters can offer indications of origin and evolution of the Moon.
      • The South Pole region of the Moon also contains clues to the fossil records of early solar systems. Thus, it can improve our understanding of the early solar system as well.
    • Map the lunar surface and prepare 3D maps of it.