Chennai Engineer Helps NASA Spot Vikram Lander Debris

An Indian engineer aided NASA's Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter (LRO) team in its discovery of the impact site of Chandrayaan-2's lander, Vikram. The space agency is crediting Shanmuga Subramanian - an Indian app developer and amateur space sleuth - for spotting the scattered remains of the lost probe.

An image published by the American space agecy showed the Vikram Lander's impact point and associated debris field.

The Chandrayaan 2 Vikram lander was aiming for a highland smooth plain about 600 kilometers from the south pole.

A tweet to National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) by Shanmuga Subramanian, a mechanical engineer from Chennai, was the reason how the world's top astronomy agency found the pictures of Vikram Lander.

On Tuesday, nearly three months after ISRO's Chandrayaan-2 crash landing on the moon, NASA said that it has found the debris of the Vikram Lander. He said NASA's inability to find the lander on its own had sparked his interest.

NASA on Tuesday released images taken by a USA spacecraft and says they show debris scattered across wide areas from the impact point.

On November 17, he zeroed in on his observations and tweeted out the possible crash site of the lander.

The lander and the rover it had on board may have met a sad fate, but the Chandrayaan-2 orbiter is still in operation and is busy studying the moon in detail from above.

Subramanian spent numerous a restless evenings throughout the following 45-odd days attempting to find the debris.

Shanmuga Subramanian, 33, an IT professional from Chennai, contacted the LRO project. "Despite the loss, getting that close to the surface was an incredible achievement". Despite the failed soft-landing, getting as close to the surface as Vikram did was an incredible achievement, the agency said.

United States space agency NASA on Tuesday announced that they had found the debris of Vikram - the lander of Chandrayaan-2, India's second mission to the moon. The mission was on course for a successful soft-landing when ISRO lost contact with Vikram lander in the last moment. The wreckage was found about 750 meters northwest of the main crash site. I had tweeted and emailed the space agency on October 3 alerting them to what might be the debris of the lander.

As it turns out, Subramanian was spot on with his inferences, and now NASA has lauded him for finding the lander.

I feel elated to be notified by NASA.

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