As the crucial moment of lunar landing of Chandrayaan-2 draws near, the mood at space agency ISRO is getting tense.
'Vikram'-the missions' lander that has the 'Pragya' rover housed withing it is all set to soft-land on the lunar surface in the early hours of Saturday.
"Everybody is tight-lipped. I am also tight-lipped. Let the event be over", a senior official associated with the mission said on Thursday.
"Every body's mind is only on what's happening in the (Chandrayaan-2) spacecraft and lander ('Vikram'). Let's all pray for the successful soft-landing," the official said.
Chairman of ISRO (Indian Space Research Organisation) K Sivan recently said the space agency "had done everything humanly possible" for the mission's success.
Top space scientists have also expressed confidence about the success of the ambitious venture.
"It's going to be a remarkable event (soft-landing) and we are all looking forward to it. I am sure it will be a 100 per cent success", former ISRO Chairman G Madhavan Nair, who spearheaded the Chandrayaan-1 mission more than a decade ago, told PTI.
Another former ISRO Chairman, A S Kiran Kumar, described the proposed soft-landing as one of the very critical operations.
"So far, whatever has been done in comparison to that now we are entering the most critical phase, and up to now, all things have gone as per the plan and expectation is everything will go as per the plan", Kiran Kumar told PTI.
A Annadurai, the project director of Chandrayaan-1 and programme director of Mangalyaan Mars Orbiter Mission noted that ISRO had the experience of undertaking more than 40 GEO
(Geosynchronous Equatorial Orbit) missions.
"I am sure it (soft-landing) will go through", Annadurai said, adding, ISRO had conducted many tests before the launch and he was part of the review team in some of them.
After its launch on July 22, Chandrayaan-2 spacecraft comprising the orbiter, lander and the rover left the earth's orbit in the dark hours on August 14 and six days later entered the Lunar orbit.
On September 2, the Rs 978 crore lunar mission moved a step closer to the Moon after the landing module 'Vikram' was successfully separated from the orbiter and its orbit lowered
in two more manoeuvres in the next two days.
Vikram is scheduled for a powered-descent between 1 am and 2 am on Saturday, followed by the touchdown of the Lander, carrying rover Pragyan, between 1.30 am and 2.30 am on the
unexplored lunar south pole, ISRO has said.
ISRO Chairman K Sivan has said the soft-landing on the Moon is going to be a "terrifying" moment, a reference to the complexities involved in the event.
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