Author Topic: ISRO Mars Orbiter Mission - Nov 2013 launch to September 2014 arrival - UPDATES  (Read 437206 times)

Offline Artyom.

Processing Highlights of India's First Mission to Mars



Mars Orbiter Processing Highlights of India's First Mars Mission



Launch of India's First Mission to Mars on PSLV Rocket

"Earth is the cradle of humanity, but one cannot live in a cradle forever." - Konstantin Eduardovich Tsiolkovsky.

Offline AJA

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That was cool. Still, we've a long way to go. ISRO chairman promises daily updates (watch the Facebook page, and their website), and says they expect to convene again for the GSLV launch before the year's out.

Online MATTBLAK

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Good for them!! I hope it all goes really well.
"Those who can't, Blog".   'Space Cadets' of the World - Let us UNITE!! (crickets chirping)

Offline belegor

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Congratulations to ISRO and all involved in the mission!

Question for the more versed in mission design / orbital mechanics:
A Swiss newspaper wrote:
"After the launch, [in order to travel to Mars] it will first orbit Earth in an elliptical orbit, in order to gather speed with the help of the magnetic field."

Can someone explain, what is meant here (I've never heard of that before)? Or is it a mistake by the journalist?
If it is, what's the purpose of those successively higher elliptical orbits, as opposed to direct TMI?

Online sanman

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Well, I've repeatedly read on the net that ISRO's Mars orbiter will be sent to Mars via a slingshot maneuver - I presume this refers to a gravitational slingshot, since that's the only kind of slingshot I know of. So I assume the news source you referenced simply misspoke, and they really meant to say "help of the Earth's gravitational field".

Offline belegor

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Thanks. That raises the question though, how do gravity assist manoeuvers work if you're staying in Earth's reference frame? I always thought of gravity assists as changes in speed in the heliocentric frame... But my understanding of orbital mechanics is very limited, so I'm happy to learn  ;)

Offline seshagirib

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No gravitational sling shot effect either.
The LAM will be fired repeatedly, increasing the velocity and hence raising the orbit incrementally.
Eventually the craft will attain escape velocity and break free from earth orbit.
The advantage of this incremental method is possibility of fine tuning orbit, while correcting for any errors.
« Last Edit: 11/05/2013 10:17 AM by seshagirib »

Offline Galactic Penguin SST

We have orbit parameters from NORAD...

2013-060A/39370 (MOM spacecraft) - 261 x 23927 km x 19.42
2013-060B/39371 (PSLV 4th stage) - 265 x 23518 km x 19.16
Chinese spaceflight is a cosmic riddle wrapped in a galactic mystery inside an orbital enigma... - (not) Winston Churchill

Online sanman

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No gravitational sling shot effect either.
The LAM will be fired repeatedly, increasing the velocity and hence raising the orbit incrementally.
Eventually the craft will attain escape velocity and break free from earth orbit.
The advantage of this incremental method is possibility of fine tuning orbit, while correcting for any errors.

Thanks for that - sorry, my bad.  :-[

But so did the rocket overperformance help anything in this regard? Will it provide any extra mission performance, or will it simply not detract from nominal mission performance?

Offline Silmfeanor

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No gravitational sling shot effect either.
The LAM will be fired repeatedly, increasing the velocity and hence raising the orbit incrementally.
Eventually the craft will attain escape velocity and break free from earth orbit.
The advantage of this incremental method is possibility of fine tuning orbit, while correcting for any errors.

I think the Oberth Effect works, though? You could characterise that as gravitational help. Still a stretch, however, so I guess it is just wrong in the articles.

Online guckyfan

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But so did the rocket overperformance help anything in this regard? Will it provide any extra mission performance, or will it simply not detract from nominal mission performance?

They timed the 4th stage burn so they exactly hit the target orbit. If there was any spare capacity due to overperformance of the 3rd stage they did not use it. For whatever reason.


Online Liss

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Congratulations to ISRO with a perfect launch!
Hope Mars departure burns will be perfect as well!
This message reflects my personal opinion based on open sources of information.

Offline robertross

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Congrats to the teams in India on a successful launch. I hope the craft does equally as well.

Thanks for the superb coverage guys!
Remembering those who made the ultimate sacrifice for our rights & freedoms, and for those injured, visible or otherwise, in that fight.

Offline Star One

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There is already over a 1000 comments on the BBC article on this mission, unfortunately it has partly degenerated into that old debate of why are they being sent aid when they are launching craft to Mars.:( The sheer level ignorance of some postings about this project is pretty depressing.
« Last Edit: 11/05/2013 11:58 AM by Star One »

Online LouScheffer

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But so did the rocket overperformance help anything in this regard? Will it provide any extra mission performance, or will it simply not detract from nominal mission performance?

They timed the 4th stage burn so they exactly hit the target orbit. If there was any spare capacity due to overperformance of the 3rd stage they did not use it. For whatever reason.


There is a carefully planned and quite complex series of (6?) orbit raising maneuvers, ending with the spacecraft at a very specific location relative to Earth in  a few weeks, for the final trans-Mars insertion.  If they use any left-over performance here, the initial orbit will be longer, and all subsequent events will be thrown off.  (If there was enough over-performance, in theory they could switch to an entirely different sequence with one less phasing orbit.  But that much over-performance is unlikely, and the flight software surely could not make that switch anyway, no matter how much margin it thought it had...)

Offline Galactic Penguin SST

Best photos I've ever seen of a PSLV (or even any Indian) launch! I nearly thought that's a Cape Canaveral Delta II launch at first glance!  8)
Chinese spaceflight is a cosmic riddle wrapped in a galactic mystery inside an orbital enigma... - (not) Winston Churchill

Offline ugordan

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Any higher resolution versions available?

Offline baldusi

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Those ARE amazing pictures. Perfect exposure and framing. Somebody there has finally put a pro at doing this things. Yet, ULA is still my second favorite at rocket pictures (the first is the guy who pictured Shuttle launches with a big format view camera).

Offline Elvis in Space

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There is already over a 1000 comments on the BBC article on this mission, unfortunately it has partly degenerated into that old debate of why are they being sent aid when they are launching craft to Mars.:( The sheer level ignorance of some postings about this project is pretty depressing.

Whenever I start reading message board/YouTube/Facebook comments I try to console myself that surely most of this represents one of the bottom layers of humanity. At the other end of the spectrum we have just witnessed one of the largest segments of Earth's population reach across space to another planet. It represents a wonderful achievement for India and the rest of us. Somehow I expect the mission to perform as well as the launching. A year from now I hope a billion people with a long history share the pride of knowing this was done with their own efforts. That should inspire them to even greater things.
Cheeseburgers on Mars!

Offline Galactic Penguin SST

The launch as seen from some distance away:



The same user has taken pretty good videos of quite a few launches out of Sriharikota before.
Chinese spaceflight is a cosmic riddle wrapped in a galactic mystery inside an orbital enigma... - (not) Winston Churchill

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