India achieved a significant milestone as it successfully executed the landing of its Chandrayaan 3 robotic probe on the lunar surface. The event occurred on Wednesday, with the Chandrayaan 3 lander making a precise touchdown near the Moon’s South Pole at approximately 8:33 a.m. EDT (6:03 p.m. IST).
Lunar landings have presented considerable challenges in recent times, evident from the recent Luna 24 probe crash by Russia, the Japanese Hakuto-R Mission 1’s unfortunate loss, and India’s own setback with the Chandrayaan 2 lander’s failure in September 2019.
The journey of Chandrayaan 3 commenced on July 14, 2023, when it was launched atop a Launch Vehicle Mark 3 (LVM3) from Sriharikota, India. The mission’s name, “Chandrayaan,” finds its origins in the Sanskrit words “Chandra” meaning moon and “Yaan” meaning vehicle, as explained by the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO).
Loaded with a collection of scientific instruments, the lander is also accompanied by a compact rover. The mission’s profile, as outlined by the Indian space agency, anticipates both the lander and rover to operate effectively for a solitary lunar day, equivalent to 14 days on Earth. This mission signifies India’s persistent efforts in lunar exploration and technological advancement.