India had its most proud moment yesterday as it joined the USA, China, and Russia in sending an unmanned satellite to the moon’s lunar surface. The country’s second visit to the moon has been made possible because of years of work by Muthayya Vanitha, who is the project director, and it will be navigated to the Moon by mission director Ritu Karidhal.
Muthayya Vanitha is an electronics system engineer and has a heavy burden of handling the mission. She was responsible for data handling systems for India’s remote sensing satellites.
Ritu Karidhal, the mission director of Chandrayaan-2 was the Deputy Operations Director for the Mars mission. Karidhal has a Master’s degree in Aerospace Engineering from the Indian Institute of Science, Bengaluru. She is responsible for the spacecraft’s outward autonomy system. Karidhal is also known as the ‘rocket woman’ of India.
Like Ms. Vanitha and Ms. Karidhal, there are countless women who have toiled to make the mission come to life. About 30 percent of the workforce at ISRO is women.