Chandrayaan-3 Only 1,437 KM Away from Moon, Next Manoeuvre on August 14

Bengaluru: The Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) has successfully reduced the orbit of its Chandrayaan-3 spacecraft, bringing it closer to the moon’s surface. The manoeuvre was carried out on August 9 from the ISRO Telemetry, Tracking, and Command Network (ISTRAC) centre in Bengaluru. As a result, the spacecraft now orbits the moon at a distance of just 1,437 km.

This recent adjustment has brought Chandrayaan-3’s orbit even closer to the moon’s surface, now positioned at 174 km x 1437 km. The next manoeuvre is scheduled for August 14, between 11:30 and 12:30 Hrs. IST. The final orbit reduction manoeuvre is set for August 16.

Launched on July 14, Chandrayaan-3 comprises a lander module (LM), a propulsion module (PM), and a rover. Following the lunar orbit insertion on August 5, ISRO has planned a series of manoeuvres to gradually align Chandrayaan-3’s orbit with the lunar poles.

ISRO Chairman S. Somanath mentioned that the design of the lander ensures a safe landing even if sensors malfunction during the soft landing attempt on August 23. He emphasized the robustness of the systems, improvements in guidance design, and the introduction of advanced algorithms for this mission.

The upcoming timeline involves the PM and LM separation on August 17, followed by de-boost manoeuvres before the power descent phase. The anticipated touchdown of the lander on the lunar surface is set for August 23 at 5:47 p.m.

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