Breakthrough: Snapshots from Afar

Breakthrough: Snapshots from Afar


In the second episode of Science Friday and HHMI’s series “Breakthrough: Portraits of Women in Science,” three scientists share stories about India’s first interplanetary mission—a mission to Mars. With limited time and budget to design and launch the satellite—called MOM (for Mars Orbiter Mission)—Seetha Somasundaram, Nandini Harinath, and Minal Rohit spent long hours in the clean room, followed by tense and exciting moments tracking the satellite as it entered Mars’s orbit. Their efforts helped India become the first nation to successfully reach the Red Planet on its first attempt.

Produced in collaboration with the
Howard Hughes Medical Institute

Produced by Emily V. Driscoll and Luke Groskin
Directed by Emily V. Driscoll
Filmed by Anshul Uniyal
Edited by Emily V. Driscoll
Animations by Jason Drakeford
Production Assistance by Manjunath Kelasgiri and Lokanatha Reddy
Lighting by Manjunath A G

Sound by Sathya Murthy for Felis Productions
Music by Audio Network
Color by Troy Cunningham / Running Man Post

Photographs by
AFP Photo/Manjunath Kiran, Associated Press
EPA b.v./Alamy, Malin Space Science Systems
NASA/JPL/USGS

Additional Video by DECU ISRO and SaiRocket

Project Advisors:
Laura A. Helft, Laura Bonetta, Dennis W.C. Liu and Sean B. Carroll –
Howard Hughes Medical Institute

Special Thanks to
Deviprasad Karnik, Nandini Harinath, Minal Rohit, Seetha Somasundaram, Indian Space Research Organisation
Natalie Cash, Priti Gill, Abhishek Chinnappa, Shanta & Sankara Jalagani, Nirmala Somashekhara, Prajval Shastri, Zoe Timms,
Christian Skotte, Danielle Dana, Ariel Zych, and Jennfier Fenwick
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