The Indian Space Research Organisation (Isro) on Wednesday said that the Centre has approved to develop a lander and a rover for the much-expected second moon mission 'Chandrayaan-II'.
"We are indigenously developing a lander and rover for our 'Chandrayaan-II' mission. The 15-kg device will be ready by 2016", Isro Chairman K Radhakrishnan told reporters. He said the decision came against the back drop of certain delays and changes in the Russian space programme on the moon.
Radhakrishnan also said the Isro is waiting for additional funds for second moon mission, which is expected to be released by the Centre soon.
He said the moon mission will be on India’s heavier rocket Geosynchronous Satellite Launch Vehicle (GSLV).
After two successful GSLV missions, the Isro will be confident of going ahead with the moon mission on its heavier rocket, Radhakrishnan said.
According to him, there could probably be another launch of GSLV Mark III in March-April 2014.
Asked about the launch of GSLV-D5 which was called off in August due to fuel leak, Radhakrishnan said the work on GSLV assembly was proceeding. "The launch is expected by this December", he added.
Asked whether India is competing with China in the space programme, Radhakrishnan reiterated “Our country is not in the space race with any other nation”.