Bengaluru/PTI. Chandrayaan 3, India’s third lunar mission, successfully entered the Moon’s orbit on Saturday. The spacecraft was launched 22 days ago with the aim of landing on the lunar south pole, a destination that no other country has reached yet.
After undergoing critical maneuvers to bring Chandrayaan 3 closer to the Moon without any glitches, the spacecraft sent a message to ISRO’s space unit in Bengaluru saying, “I am feeling the moon’s gravity.” This achievement marks a significant milestone in ISRO’s ambitious mission, which is worth approximately 600 crores INR.
Since its launch on July 13, the spacecraft has covered nearly two-thirds of the distance to the Moon, and the next 18 days will be crucial for the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO).
ISRO shared the message received from the spacecraft with its centers, which read, “MOX, East Track, this is Chandrayaan 3. I am feeling the moon’s gravity.”
The next major operation is scheduled for Sunday night, where Chandrayaan 3’s orbit will be reduced. Following that, three more maneuvers will be carried out until August 17. Afterward, the lander Vikram will separate from the propulsion module, along with the rover Pragyan. The lander will then perform a de-orbiting maneuver.
Since its launch on July 13, ISRO has been working diligently to lift Chandrayaan 3 from the Earth’s orbit towards the Moon. On August 1, a critical process successfully placed the spacecraft on the trajectory towards the Moon.
After this process, Chandrayaan 3 began its journey away from the Earth on a path that will lead it towards the vicinity of the Moon.