20 Aug 2023

Chandrayaan-3 Now Only 25 KM From Moon; Final Deboosting Successful Before Landing

Chennai: The ISRO on Sunday said it successfully reduced the orbit of the Chandrayaan-3 mission's Lander Module (LM), further bringing it closer to the moon.

The deboost operations have placed Lander Module in an orbit, where the Perilune (the orbit's closest point to the Moon) is 25 kilometres and Apolune (farthest point from the Moon) is 134 km, from where the soft landing on the south polar region of the Moon will be attempted.

"The final deboosting (slowing down) operation has successfully reduced the LM orbit to 25 km x 134 km. The module would undergo internal checks and await the Sun-rise at the designated landing site. The powered descent is expected to commence on August 23, 2023, around 1745 Hrs IST,” ISRO said in a post on 'X' (formerly Twitter) .

ISRO also said that the Lander Module would now undergo internal checks.

The Lander Module, comprising the lander ‘Vikram' and rover ‘Pragyan', is expected to touch down on the lunar surface on August 23 evening, it said.

The LM of Chandrayaan-3 successfully separated from the Propulsion Module on Thursday, 35 days after the mission was launched on July 14.

Lander would scan the surface at height of about 100 m

At around 30 km altitude, the lander enters the powered braking phase, and begins to use its thrusters to reach the surface of the moon, ISRO said. At an altitude of about 100 m, the lander would scan the surface to check whether there are any obstacles and then start descending to make a soft landing.

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