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India to initiate moon mission Chandrayaan-II: President

Chandrayaan orbiting the moon.

NEW DELHI (PTI): After a successful maiden moon mission, India will initiate the process for its sequel Chandrayaan-II, President Pratibha Patil said Monday.

"...activities towards the Chandrayaan-2 Mission will be initiated," she said in her address to the joint sitting of both Houses of Parliament here.

Under Chandrayaan-II, space scientists plan to land two robotic rovers on the surface of the moon that would conduct experiments on the lunar soil and send the data back on earth.

Patil said moves were already afoot to further develop the next generation satellite launch vehicle GSLV-Mark III with a capacity to put four tonne satellites in orbit.

Currently, the Indian space agency ISRO's Geosynchronous Satellite Launch Vehicle (GSLV) has the capability to launch 2.5 tonne satellites.

The President said that the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) has plans for the flight test of the GSLV-D3 launch vehicle with indigenous cryogenic stage, and launch the Cartosat-2B, INSAT-3D and Resourcesat-2 satellites in the near future.

"The space programme continued to provide societal services to the nation in the areas of tele-medicine, tele-education and village resource centres," Patil said.

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