India will witness first ever private mission to Moon. A Bengaluru-based aerospace company named TeamIndus is all set to launch its spacecraft that will land on Moon and explore the lunar surface. Indian space agency ISRO will lift the TeamIndus spacecraft on December 28, 2017.
As per the reports, the aim of the mission is to successfully land the rover on the moon which will travel at least 500m on the lunar surface and beam back high-definition video and images back to the earth. The mission will lay the path for the bigger Chandrayaan-2 mission.
If the mission is successful then ISRO scientists will the use the technology and develop the Chandrayaan-2 lander for exploration of Moon. It will be ISRO’s second mission to the moon after the success of Chandrayaan-1 mission in 2008. However, the Chandrayaan-2 mission is still in early stages and no mission update and launch dates have been announced by the officials yet.
While taking of the private moon mission, every part of the mission is being completed by the TeamIndus except the launching which is being assisted by ISRO. As per the estimates, the mission will cost around $60 million. So far, the team has raised $15 million and they aim to raise remaining funds by September-October next year.
“The total expense of the project is about USD 60 million and we have raised USD 15 million so far. We will have to raise the remaining amount by September-October next year,” TeamIndus co-founder and Director Julius Amrit said.
Renowned personalities like Ratan Tata of the Tata Group; Sachin and Binny Bansal, co-founders of Flipkart and Nandan Nilekani, co-founder of Infosys Ltd, have invested in the project.
In addition, the TeamIndus which is backed by a team of hundred engineers is aiming to win $25 million Google Lunar XPRIZE competition.
“The Moon is not only our nearest planetary neighbor, but it is also the gateway to the rest of the universe,” Google’s website describing the Lunar XPRIZE states. “The Moon provides exciting opportunities for discovery in the fields of science, technology, resource detection and utilization, and human habitation.”