India Becomes The First Country to land on the moon’s south pole with chandrayaan-3 mission
“India Is On The Moon” – ISRO Leader, Sreedhara Somanath
Chandrayaan-3 Mission: India, I Reached My Destination And You Too!
The Indian Space and Research and Organisation (“ISRO”) has successfully landed a spacecraft on the Moon on August 23, 2023. It’s the first time that any country has safely landed at the Moon’s South Pole. This is a historic moment for India and the whole country broke out in celebration. To mark the success of Chandrayaan-3, India will celebrate August 23 as “National Space Day“. The Chandrayaan-3 lander’s touchdown point will be called Shiv Shakti.
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Chandrayaan-3 consists of a Lander Vikram, the Rover Pragyan, and a propulsion module.
The rover and lander are solar-powered, and are expected to work for one Lunar day, which is equivalent to 14 Earth days. After that, the Sun will set at the South Pole, and the machines will no longer have power. The objective of the mission is to study the Moon in different ways, including investigating its temperature, earthquakes, and minerals.
The six-wheeled rover will hunt for ice and other signs of water – clicking pictures, taking measurements and collecting data to be sent back down to Earth. Scientists believe craters that are permanently in shadow on the dark side of the Moon may hold frozen water.
India’s Moon rover took its first steps on the lunar surface on August 24.
“India took a walk on the Moon!” -ISRO said.
ONLY FOUR COUNTRIES HAVE EVER SUCCESSFULLY LANDED ON THE MOON
INTERESTING FACTS ABOUT CHANDRAYAAN-3
Chandrayaan is Sanskrit (an ancient Indian language) for “moon craft”.
The Vikram lander was named in honour of Vikram Sarabhai, who started India’s space program.
Pragyan means “wisdom” in Sanskrit.
Chandrayaan-3 is a follow-on mission to the previous Indian missions to the Moon. It is India’s third Chandrayaan mission.
The Lunar South Pole is also called the dark side of the Moon for the reason that the side of the moon is never visible from the Earth’s view. The dark side of the Moon is also called so because of the fact that there is no sunlight.
WHAT HAPPENS TO THE CHANDRAYAAN-3 AFTER 14 DAYS?
According to a Hindustan Times report, after 14 days, it will be night on the Moon for the next 14 days. Since Vikram and Pragyan can only work in the Sun, they will become inactive there. However, ISRO scientists have not ruled out the possibility of the duo coming back to life when the Sun rises again. It is also reported that the moon craft will not return to Earth.
Soft landing means landing a spacecraft at a soft, gentle, and controlled speed so that the spacecraft is not damaged while landing.
FINDINGS OF THE CHANDRAYAAN-3 MISSION
As of the date of printing this Issue, the Pragyaan rover has made and sent some important observations. The Pragyaan rover has travelled around 100m from the Vikram lander.
The observations made by Chandrayaan-3:
1. During its ten-day observation cycle, the Pragyaan rover has made some interesting discoveries. It has also encountered and safely bypassed a crater on the Moon’s surface.
2. It has confirmed the presence of sulphur, aluminium, calcium, iron, chromium, titanium, manganese, oxygen and silicon on the lunar surface near the south pole.
3. It found that while the surface temperature was 50°C, within just 80mm (8cms) beneath the surface, it dropped to -10°C! It reached freezing point (0°C) at just 7cms under the surface!
The ISRO has announced that rover Pragyan has completed its assignment and now has been safely parked and put into sleep mode to survive the lunar night. “Currently, the battery is fully charged. The solar panel is oriented to receive light at the next sunrise expected on September 22, 2023. The receiver is kept on”, ISRO said.
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