NASA has found no evidence of Chandrayaan-2's Vikram lander in the images captured during a latest flyby of its Moon orbiter of the lunar region where India's ambitious mission attempted a soft landing, the US space agency said.
The Chandrayaan-2 Vikram lander and the rover had a mission life of one Lunar day, which is equivalent to 14 earth days and ended in September. On September 7, Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) attempted a soft landing of Vikram on the uncharted lunar south pole, before losing communication with the lander.
"The Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter imaged the area of the targeted Chandrayaan-2 Vikram landing site on October 14 but did not observe any evidence of the lander," Noah Edward Petro, the Project Scientist for the LRO mission, told in an exclusive email interaction.
Petro said that the camera team carefully examined the images and employed the change detection technique -- using a ratio of an image from prior to the landing attempt to the one acquired on October 14.
This approach, he said, is used for finding new meteorite impacts on the Moon that also helped locate the recent Beresheet lander.
(with news agency inputs)