Built To Last 6 Months, Mangalyaan Completes 4 Years Of Orbiting Around Mars

India’s maiden interplanetary mission—Mangalyaan—recently completed 4 years of orbiting Mars. When it was put into orbit around the red planet on September 24, 2014, it made India the first country to enter the planet’s orbit on its first attempt, and only the fourth overall to send probes to Mars.

The Mars Orbiter Mission, popularly known as Mangalyaan, was launched in November 2013 by ISRO and became the first mission to enter the Mars orbit on its first attempt. The mission put Indian space mission at the centre stage as the mission’s cost was less than the budget of Sandra Bullock-starrer Gravity. The payload consists of instruments that are used in surface imaging, particle environment studies and atmospheric studies.

The mission won National Space Society’s 2015 Space Pioneer Award. An illustration of the spacecraft was also featured on the Rs 2000 banknote.

ISRO also plans to role out Mangalayaan-2 mission with a greater scientific payload in 2020.