Indian mission set to land on Moon

Indian mission set to land on Moon

Country's third lunar exploration mission, Chandrayaan-3, will attempt landing on lunar south pole Wednesday evening

By Anadolu staff

ANKARA (AA) - India's third lunar exploration mission is set to make a landing attempt on the Moon on Wednesday as the country aims to become the first to land on the lunar south pole.

The country last month successfully launched its lunar exploration mission Chandrayaan-3, aiming to land a rover on the Moon.

The Indian Space Research Organization said Tuesday that the mission is on schedule and systems are undergoing regular checks.

"Smooth sailing is continuing," it wrote on X, formerly Twitter.

The space agency said the lander from Chandrayaan-3 is all set to land at 6.04 p.m. local time (1234GMT) on Wednesday.

The agency has also released images of the far side of the Moon captured by a lander hazard detection and avoidance camera which assists in locating a safe landing area during the descent.

As the excitement is rising in India over the much-awaited landing attempt, special prayers are being held in the country for the success of the mission.

India's landing attempt comes days after the failure of Luna-25, Russia’s first moon mission in 47 years, when the spacecraft, which was expected to land on Monday, spun out of control and crashed into the Moon.

Indian officials said that if the Chandrayaan-3 landing proves successful, its six-wheel rover will emerge for an expected 14 days of work on the Moon. It has listed three main objectives: To achieve a safe and soft landing on the lunar surface, to deploy the rover on the Moon, and to conduct on-site scientific experiments.

So far, only three other countries -- the US, Russia and China -- have successfully put a spacecraft on the Moon in a soft landing. If successful, India will also become the first country to land on the little-explored lunar south pole.

This is not India's first mission. The Chandrayaan-2 mission previously deployed an orbiter in 2019 but later announced that its lander and rover had been destroyed in a crash. The first Chandrayaan moon mission -- the earliest conducted by India -- was launched in 2008.

The Chandrayaan-3 mission is attracting wider international collaborations for India, Minister of State Jitendra Singh said Tuesday.

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