India’s Chandrayaan 3 Lander Launches Successfully 

The Chandrayaan 3 mission, led by the Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO), aims to achieve a significant milestone in lunar exploration. Scheduled for late August 2023, the mission’s primary objective is to deploy a lander and rover near the Moon’s south pole, demonstrating advanced landing and roving capabilities. Alongside this feat, Chandrayaan 3 will conduct various scientific observations from both orbit and the lunar surface.

About Chandrayaan 3 Mission

With the primary goal of deploying a lander and rover in the highlands near the Moon’s south pole in late August 2023 and showcasing end-to-end landing and roving capabilities, Chandrayaan 3 is an ISRO (Indian Space Research Organization) mission. Additionally, it will perform a variety of scientific observations from orbit and on the ground. It consists of a propulsion module and a lander/rover. The lander/rover would be comparable to Chandrayaan 2’s Vikram rover, but with enhancements to aid assure a secure landing. The propulsion module would launch it into lunar orbit and then maintain that orbit while serving as a communications relay satellite.

When Will Chandrayaan 3 land on the Surface?

At 14:35 on Friday (09:05 GMT), the Chandrayaan-3 spacecraft—which includes an orbiter, lander, and rover—launched from Sriharikota.

On August 23–24, the lander is scheduled to arrive on the Moon.

If successful, India will join the United States, the former Soviet Union, and China as the only other nations to make a soft landing on the moon.

Thousands of spectators gathered in the viewer’s gallery to see the launch, and pundits hailed the rocket’s “majestic” “soaring in the sky” display. Cheers and thunderous acclaim from the spectators and scientists greeted the lift-off.

What the Spacecraft Is Supposed to Do After Landing?

The lander, named Vikram after the founder of ISRO, weighs roughly 500 kg and has a 26-kilogram rover inside of it called Pragyaan, which is Sanskrit for “wisdom.”

The spacecraft will enter the Moon’s orbit between 15 and 20 days after lifting off on Friday. Over the following few weeks, scientists will start slowing down the rocket to a point where Vikram may land gently.

If all goes as planned, the six-wheeled rover will then eject and wander over the lunar surface, collecting crucial data and taking pictures that will be sent back to Earth for analysis.

“The rover is carrying five instruments which will focus on finding out about the physical characteristics of the surface of the Moon, the atmosphere close to the surface, and the tectonic activity to study what goes on below the surface. I’m hoping we’ll find something new,” Mr Somanath told Mirror Now.

What Was the Glitch in Chandrayaan-2? 

A lander, an orbiter, and a rover were also launched with Chandrayaan-2 in July 2019, however, the mission was only partially successful. Even now, its orbiter is still circling and studying the Moon, but the lander’s rover crashed upon touchdown since it was unable to make a soft landing.  It was because of “a last-minute glitch in the braking system”, explained Mr. Annadurai.

Mr. Somanath has said, to repair the bugs, they thoroughly examined the data from the last crash and ran simulation tests.

Chandrayaan 3, which weighs 3,900kg and costs 6.1bn rupees ($75m; £58m), has the “same goals” as its predecessor – to ensure a soft landing on the Moon’s surface, he added.

How Did the Mission Chandrayaan-2 Contribute to Chandrayaan-3?

Mr. Somanath continues by saying that data from the Chandrayaan-2 crash has been “collected and analyzed” and has assisted in correcting all of the mistakes in the most recent mission.

“The orbiter from Chandrayaan-2 has been providing lots of very high-resolution images of the spot where we want to land, and that data has been well studied so we know how many boulders and craters are there. We have widened the domain of landing for a better possibility.”

The lander and rover’s batteries would need sunlight to be able to charge and work, Mr. Annadurai explained, thus the landing would have to be “absolutely precise” to begin a lunar day (a lunar day is equivalent to 14 days on Earth).

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