Chethan Kumar Profile picture
Poet | Journalist (Space, Science & More) @timesofindia | @APCSS Fellow | Expert Consultant On Two (award winning) Space Films For @wbd
Mar 25 9 tweets 2 min read
#Update #space #India

Today, @isro said it accomplished another significant milestone on March 21, when the PSLV Orbital Experimental Module-3 (#POEM3) successfully re-entered Earth’s atmosphere in a controlled manner, leaving minimal orbital debris. 1/n

Pic: Isro Image #POEM3 was part of the #PSLVC58 mission that launched #XPoSat on Jan 1, 2024. After deploying satellites into their intended orbits, the spent rocket stage was transformed into a stabilised platform for conducting experiments. 2/n
Nov 8, 2023 16 tweets 3 min read
#JUSTIN #Sun #CoronalMassEjection #CME #thread

In what astronomers are calling “unexpected” but “beautiful surprise”, @IIABengaluru Indian Astronomical Observatory (#IAO) in #Hanle & Merak, Ladakh, captured stunning images of an intense red-coloured aurora on Nov 5.

Pics: IIA
The IAO, operated by the Indian Institute of Astrophysics (IIA), Bengaluru, is renowned for its astronomical research and observations. 2/n
Sep 20, 2023 16 tweets 3 min read
#Update #Space #Chandrayaan3

As @isro burns the midnight oil on Earth, waiting to hear again from #Vikram & #Pragyan, principal investigators of instruments on the two have begun sifting through data for new findings. 1/n Image Among many things the global scientific community is expected to learn from Vikram and Pragyan’s work before they went to sleep is new knowledge about the lunar soil, which will be useful for future missions, including ambitious projects aiming to send humans back to #Moon. 2/n
Sep 2, 2023 17 tweets 3 min read
#Update #Chandrayaan3 #Thread

On a day India’s solar sat began its 1.5 mn-km journey, its lunar mission achieved all its objectives, paving the way for @isro to put #Vikram & #Pragyan to sleep on Sunday. Read on for exclusive details from project director P Veeramuthuvel. 1/n Image Sunday, which is the 12th day since India achieved the historic soft-landing on the lunar surface, will see both Vikram and Pragyan retire for the night, Chandrayaan-3 project director P Veeramuthuvel told me. 2/n
Sep 2, 2023 14 tweets 3 min read
#Update #Space #thread

While several of its teams continue to romance #Moon, Isro is in the last leg of prep for a "Surya Namaskara". #AdityaL1 slated to launch just hrs from now. Read on to know exclusive details on why launch profile is for 63 mins, about #AOP & more… 1/n Image #AdityaL1 will be launched in the 59th flight of #PSLV, after several yrs of devp. PSLV-C57, in XL configuration, will place #AdityaL1 in a highly eccentric Earth-bound orbit, an elliptical orbit whose Perigee is expected to be around 235km & Apogee more than 19,000km. 2/n
Aug 29, 2023 8 tweets 2 min read
#JUSTIN #Space #Chandrayaan3 #Thread

In the “first-ever in-situ” measurements in the lunar polar region, the Laser-Induced Breakdown Spectroscope — #LIBS — onboard #Pragyan has “unambiguously confirmed the presence of Sulphur (S) in the lunar surface near the south pole”. 1/n
“LIBS is a scientific technique that analyses the composition of materials by exposing them to intense laser pulses. High-energy laser pulse is focused onto the surface of a material (rock or soil). The laser pulse generates an extremely hot and localised plasma,” Isro said. 2/n
Aug 28, 2023 16 tweets 3 min read
#Update #Space #Chandrayaan3 #thread

#Pragyan, has negotiated its first obstacle — a crater whose depth is approximately 100mm — boosting confidence of the team in control stations back on Earth. Read on for more from my chat with project director P Veeramuthuvel. 1/n Image In his first full-fledged interaction after #Vikram’s picture perfect landing & deployment of the rover, #Chandrayaan3 project director P Veeramuthuvel, in an exclusive interaction said the team was expecting a good amount of science at the end of the lunar day. 2/n
Aug 23, 2023 14 tweets 3 min read
#Update #Thread

Four years after success eluded India & @isro, they're on the cusp of making history again. If all goes well, #Vikram will land at 6.04pm. As #Chandrayaan3 reaches for Moon today, read what’s in store & what brought Vikram & Pragyan here 1/n Image #Vikram is better prepared to overcome challenges of landing. Among other things — I’ve reported these in detail earlier — it’ll be able to withstand landing at greater velocities (3m/s). Isro has also made several other changes learning from the failure of #Chandrayaan2. 2/n
Aug 21, 2023 12 tweets 3 min read
#Update #Space #Chandrayaan3 #thread

A day after #Vikram set the stage for a controlled landing for around 6.04pm on Aug 23 by entering a pre-landing orbit of 25km x 134km, Isro released pics of the far side of #Moon.

Read thread for more... 1/n

Pics: Isro

All 4 pics taken on Aug 19, a day before #Vikram entered pre-landing orbit. @isro would now be carrying out internal checks on landing module. Powered descent is expected to commence on August 23 at around 5.45pm and Vikram is set to land on the lunar surface around 6.04pm. 2/n
Aug 20, 2023 5 tweets 1 min read
#Update #Chandrayaan3 #thread

Exclusive: Here’s some good news even before #Vikram attempts landing: With 150kg+ fuel, the PM, which was initially expected to have a life of three-six months, is expected to live on for several years. 1/n

Pic: #Vikram in pre-landing oribt | Isro Image Isro chairman S Somanath, confirming this, said: “It has too much fuel, way beyond our expectations… 2/n
Aug 17, 2023 8 tweets 2 min read
#Update #Space #India #Thread

As @isro prepares for the critical #Chandrayaan3 landing module — #Vikram (with #Pragyan) — separation later today. Here’s what happened yesterday & what needs to happen hereafter. 1/n

Pic: Moon as imaged by LHVC on Aug 9 | Credit: Isro Image @isro has completed the last #LBN & #Chandrayaan3 is in a 153km x 163km orbit... In his post-launch remarks on July 14, Isro chief had said the spacecraft’s altitude will be reduced to a 100km circular orbit a day before the lander is separated... 2/n
Aug 14, 2023 10 tweets 3 min read
#JUSTIN #Sun #Space #India #Thread

India’s first solar mission, #AdityaL1, which Isro hopes to launch by the end of August or early September, has reached the spaceport in Sriharikota. 1/n

Pics: Isro

“#AdityaL1, the first space-based Indian observatory to study the Sun, is getting ready for launch. The satellite realised at the URSC has arrived at SDSC-SHAR (spaceport) in Sriharikota,” Isro said. 2/n
Jun 12, 2023 12 tweets 4 min read
#Update #thread

The Isro Human Space Flight Centre — #HSFC — which is leading the implementation of #Gaganyaan has a new director, M Mohan, who has taken over ahead of a crucial test mission planned in mid-July or August. 1/n Image Mohan took charge from Umamaheswaran R, who superannuated on May 31. Mohan’s appointment will not change the composition of #Gaganyaan team as the project director and other positions continue to remain with the same personnel. 2/n
May 18, 2023 14 tweets 4 min read
#Thread #Update 

In a key milestone, #Chandrayaan3 project team, which is burning the midnight oil to meet the mid-July window for the launch, has begun the process of final assembly of payloads at the UR Rao Satellite Centre (URSC) in Bengaluru. 1/n Image @isro has adopted a cautious approach for the mission with chairman S Somanath having categorically directed scientists and engineers working on the project to ensure validation of all technologies, systems and subsystems. 2/n
Apr 1, 2023 13 tweets 4 min read
#Thread #Space

@isro, as part of plans to expand its ground station network, plans to build one in French Guiana. According to Isro, “technical discussion on establishing” the stn is on with CNES, ties with whom has expanded beyond EO to include human spaceflight & SSA. 1/n A senior Isro scientist said: “This will be what we call a gateway station, which will be used to link the proposed Indian Data Relay Satellites (IDRS). We’ve made the proposal and the site has been identified by our partners in France… 2/n
Feb 4, 2023 19 tweets 5 min read
#Thread #Space #UPDATE 

@isro has officially said the NASA-Isro SAR (#NISAR), a LEO observatory being jointly developed with @NASA “shall be launched from Indian soil in Q1 of 2024”, and its science operations will begin 90 days after it reaches the intended orbit. 1/n

Pic: JPL The synthetic aperture radar (SAR) payloads mounted on integrated radar instrument structure (IRIS) and the spacecraft bus are together called an observatory. 2/n
Jan 27, 2023 10 tweets 5 min read
#Update (2) #Space #Thread

@isro’s latest rocket, #SSLV, is geared for launch with the space agency aiming for an early Feb launch carrying three payloads. While the main payload will be #EOS7, the mission is also expected to launch #Janus1 from US' Antaris & an Indian sat. 1/n The Earth observation satellite #SSLV is scheduled to carry will be in the small satellite class with its mass not exceeding 200kg, while the other two satellites sharing the ride will be smaller. 2/n
Jan 26, 2023 12 tweets 5 min read
#Updates #Space #Thread

Had to be away. But here are some developments. More to follow later this evening or early tomorrow.

First, the #RLVTDLEX date will be fixed after the lifting trial is done. Isro will use Chinook as opposed to Mi17 as planned earlier. 1/n Image courtesy: @isro @isro, which has received a key payload #VELC for #AdityaL1 today, has completed survey and radiation studies at Fiji Islands for a temporary station being designed specifically for the Solar mission, while exploration of other sites is ongoing. 2/n
Dec 9, 2022 9 tweets 3 min read

@isro completed the first blow down test of the newly installed Trisonic Wind Tunnel at the Vikram Sarabhai Space Centre (VSSC), the space agency’s lead rocket-building agency, on Thursday. 1/n Trisonic Wind Tunnel is a system to aid aerodynamic design of rockets and re-entry spacecrafts by characterising a scaled model by evaluating forces, moments, load distribution, unsteady pressures, acoustic levels etc. 2/n
Dec 7, 2022 10 tweets 4 min read
#Thread #Space #India

In line with its renewed mandate to hand hold and encourage private industry, @isro and @SocialAlphaIN have launched a new innovation platform for the space sector: SpaceTech Innovation Network or #SpIN. 1/n Image This is India’s first dedicated platform for innovation curation & venture development for space entrepreneurial ecosystem. 2/n
Nov 28, 2022 23 tweets 9 min read
#Breaking #Stars #Galaxies #Thread

Today, @RRI_Bangalore (in pic) said in a first-of-its-kind work, using data from an Indian telescope, scientists have determined properties of radio luminous galaxies formed just 200-mn yrs after #BigBang — a period known as #CosmicDawn. 1/n Pointing out that telescopes, both ground and space-based, are aiming to capture faint signals from the depths of the cosmos to better the understanding of our Universe, RRI said they used the Shaped Antenna measurement of the background RAdio Spectrum-3 (#SARAS3) telescope. 2/n