Tinsukia: Meet Nidhi Sharma (Scientist at ISRO), the daughter in law of Deepak Deb and Sikha Deb from Tinsukia. She is one of the top-ranking scientists and was working on Chandrayaan-2 mission.
Speaking to media, Deepak Deb informed that she never disclosed about her profession or anything about the ISRO in detailed earlier.
Interestingly, Deepak and his family came to know about her position when ISRO lost contact with Chandrayaan-2 lander 2.1 km above the lunar surface last Saturday. Soon after the incident, Nidhi Sharma contacted her in-laws in Tinsukia and briefed about the entire matter, informed the father in law Deepak Deb.
Chandrayaan-2 is the second lunar exploration mission developed by the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO), after Chandrayaan-1. It consists of a lunar orbiter, the Vikram lander, and the Pragyan lunar rover, all of which were developed in India. The main scientific objective is to map the location and abundance of lunar water via Pragyan, and ongoing analysis from the orbiter circling at a lunar polar orbit of 100 × 100 km.
The mission was launched to the Moon from the second launch pad at Satish Dhawan Space Centre on 22 July 2019 at 2.43 PM IST (09:13 UTC) by a Geosynchronous Satellite Launch Vehicle Mark III (GSLV Mk III). The craft reached the Moon’s orbit on 20 August 2019 and began orbital positioning manoeuvres for the landing of the Vikram lander. Vikram and the rover were scheduled to land on the near side of the Moon, in the south polar region at a latitude of about 70° south at approximately 1:50 am on 7 September 2019 and conduct scientific experiments for one lunar day, lasting two Earth weeks. However, at about 1:52 am IST, the lander deviated from its intended trajectory at around 2.1 kilometres (1.3 mi) from landing, and lost communication.
Initial reports suggesting a crash have been confirmed by ISRO chairman K. Sivan, stating that the lander location had been found, and “it must had been a hard landing”. The orbiter, part of the mission with eight scientific instruments, remains operational and will continue its seven-year mission to study the Moon.