When NASA Asked Public To Find Vikram Lander?
Shanmuga Subramanian became the first person to locate the debris from the Vikram moon lander on the images shared by NASA. It is a fete for this 33-year old engineer from Chennai that he guided space scientists in spotting the place where Vikram crashed.
Who is Shanmuga Subramanian?
He is a Chennai based mechanical engineer with interest in space research and this self-professed space nerd spend close to seven hours everyday after the crashing of Vikram. He studied old images and new images on side-by-side laptop in his Chennai apartment. He kept his search within 2 square kilometer area of the Vikram’s crash site. Finally, he came up with a positive identification and shared his details with NASA and ISRO on twitter.
NASA’s view on Subramanian’s findings
The US space research organizations performed additional searches to verify his claims and officially announced the findings two months later. NASA released a mosaic image of the moon taken by its Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter (LRO) and invited public to find the crash site. Shanmuga Subramanian found the debris about 750 meters northwest of the main crash site. It was visible as a single bright pixel in the first mosaic.
Vikram lander lost communication with its orbiter Chandraayan 2 while making soft landing on the moon on September 6. The US space agency released an image taken by its LRO showing the site of the spacecraft’s impact. But it is only Subramanian that could track the exact site of crashing on his laptops.