Thiruvananthapuram: India’s third lunar mission – Chandrayaan 3 – is likely to be launched on July 12. The launch was carried out on a Launch Vehicle Mark-3 (LVM3) rocket from the second launch pad at the Satish Dhawan Space Centre, Sriharikota.
Unlike Chandrayaan 2, the new mission does not have a satellite. It has a propulsion module (rocket), a lander and a rover. Total weight is 3900 kg. The moon landing is scheduled for August 23. The main objective of the mission is to demonstrate the capability to land a rover on the Moon along with scientific studies.
In 2019, the Vikram lander of the Chandrayaan-2 mission exploded just before landing. The revised new Lander is more powerful. The cost is Rs 615 crore. The cost of Chandrayaan 2 was 960 crores and Chandrayaan 1 was 386 crores.
From the launch, the rocket (propulsion module) will be delivered 100 km close to the moon. There the propulsion module will detach and the lander will circle the moon. During this time, the temperature of the lunar surface, the landing site, and the presence of earthquake-like vibrations will be checked. Later will soft land. The rover will be slowly released after inspecting the area. The rover only communicates with the lander. Instructions go from Earth to the rover via the lander.
The mission of the rover
Elements and nuclear presence in the lunar soil will be tested. Instruments such as alpha particle X-ray spectrometer and laser induced breakdown spectroscope to determine elemental composition.
The mission of the lander
Thermophysical instrument for measuring thermal conductivity and temperature. Lunar Seismic Activity Instrument to measure earthquakes around the landing site. Langmuir probe to estimate plasma concentration and its variations. NASA’s Laser Retroreflector Array for Laser Ranging Studies.
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