India’s boldest Moon Mission, Chandrayaan-2 has relayed a second set of lunar surface images, unprecedented in their high resolution and close-up imagery. The images were captured by the Terrain Mapping Camera-2 (TMC-2) aboard the Mission’s Orbiter component. Releasing the images the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) informed that the visuals were captured on August 23 from an altitude of about 4,375 km. The images show lunar craters Jackson, Mach, Korolev and Mitra (in the name of Prof. Sisir Kumar Mitra). Jackson is an impact crater located in the northern hemisphere on the far side of the Moon. “It is a 71 km dia crater at 22.4°N and 163.1°W. The interesting feature at the western outer rim of Mach crater is another impact crater, Mitra (92 km dia),” ISRO informed. Prof. Sisir Kumar Mitra was an Indian physicist and Padma Bhushan recipient known for his pioneering work in the field of ionosphere and Radiophysics. The Korolev crater seen in the image is a 437 km crater, which combines several small craters of varying sizes. The TMC-2 camera also captured other important impact craters, Sommerfeld and Kirkwood. Sommerfeld is a large impact crater located in the farside northern latitudes of the Moon. “It is a 169km dia crater at 65.2°N and 162.4°W.” It has a relatively flat interior surrounded by a ring mountain and a number of smaller craters lie along the rim edge. The space agency said the crater is named after Dr. Arnold Sommerfeld, a German physicist pioneer in the field of atomic and quantum physics. Northeast to this crater lies the Kirkwood crater, named after the American astronomer Daniel Kirkwood. This too is a well-formed impact crater, which is approximately 68 km in diameter.
On August 21, Chandrayaan-2 had captured its first image of the lunar surface. The black and white image identifies two spots on the lunar surface: the Mare Orientale basic and Apollo craters. The first Moon shot was captured by the Mission’s Vikram Lander at a height of about 2,650 km from the lunar surface.