Chennai: Reducing the orbit of Chandrayaan-2 Orbiter to pick up any weak signals or to take a closer look at the lander Vikram would be a dangerous move, contend space scientists.
"What is ISRO going to gain by this move is not known. Even if the Orbiter is able to pick up weak signals, in all probability, it will not be able to revive Vikram.
"At or above 100 km altitude, the Orbiter is safe. But if it is brought down to 50 km, then it has to be maintained there, which requires firing of the on-board engines.
If that is not done, the Orbiter will slowly go down," he added. Firing of Orbiter's on-board engines will expend fuel and thereby reduce its life, he said.
According to him, what is on hand is the precious Orbiter which should not be risked at this stage. "The lander Vikram has gone. Period," he added.
Meanwhile, ISRO officials said that any update on Chandrayaan-2 mission, including the status of the moon lander Vikram, will be announced on the organisation's website.
By Venkatachari Jagannathan