The Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) utilized the microblogging platform ‘X,’ formerly known as Twitter, on Monday, to provide an update on the status of the Chandrayaan mission. S Somanath, the Chairman of ISRO, conveyed, “Chandrayaan-3 is performing exceptionally well. All the instruments and systems onboard are in excellent health. We have achieved precise orbit changes without any deviations, indicating an excellent outcome. We remain optimistic.”
In a recent development, ISRO confirmed that the GSLV Mark 3 (LVM 3) heavy-lift launch vehicle, which had successfully launched the Chandrayaan-3 spacecraft, underwent a meticulously planned orbit reduction maneuver, positioning it closer to the moon.
The official ISRO Twitter account stated, “The spacecraft executed the planned orbit reduction maneuver flawlessly. Engine adjustments have brought it into proximity of the lunar surface, now at 170 km x 4313 km. The subsequent step to further decrease the orbit is scheduled for August 9, between 13:00 and 14:00 hours IST.”
ISRO is set to perform the next operation on August 9.
Moreover, ISRO recently shared the initial images of the moon captured by Chandrayaan-3, marking India’s third lunar mission. The Mission’s official Twitter handle posted, “The Moon, as observed by the Chandrayaan-3 spacecraft during Lunar Orbit Insertion (LOI) on August 5, 2023.”
On a previous occasion, Chandrayaan-3 conveyed a message to ISRO, stating ‘I feel the lunar gravity’ after entering the lunar orbit.
Chandrayaan-3, India’s third unmanned lunar mission, successfully entered the lunar orbit after 22 days of launch, embarking on a complex 41-day journey to reach the unexplored lunar south pole.
Following a smooth maneuver carried out from the Bengaluru space facility, Chandrayaan-3 transmitted, “I am feeling lunar gravity,” signifying a pivotal milestone in ISRO’s ambitious ₹600 crore mission.
ISRO disclosed that the next operation, involving the reduction of the orbit, is scheduled for 11 PM on Sunday.
Subsequently, three more operations will occur until August 17, after which the Landing Module Vikram, housing the rover Pragyan, will detach from the Propulsion Module. Following this, the lander will undergo de-orbiting maneuvers before the final powered descent onto the lunar surface.
Having covered about two-thirds of the journey since its launch on July 14, the upcoming 18 days hold significant importance for ISRO.
The Moon mission has proceeded smoothly thus far, with ISRO anticipating a gentle landing of the Vikram lander on the lunar surface on August 23. This accomplishment marks a significant milestone in ISRO’s ambitious ₹600 crore Chandrayaan-3 lunar mission.