Indian Space Research Organisation Successfully Integrates Chandrayaan-3
The objective of the Chandrayaan-3 Mission
The Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) recently announced the successful integration of the Chandrayaan-3 spacecraft with the Launch Vehicle Mark-III (LVM3). This significant achievement took place at the Sathish Dhawan Space Centre in Sriharikota. The highly anticipated launch is scheduled for 2:30 PM on July 13.
2. Objective of the Chandrayaan-3 Mission
Chandrayaan-3 serves as a follow-on to the previous Chandrayaan-2 mission, with a similar primary objective: to demonstrate the capability of achieving a soft landing on the Moon. The mission aims to deliver a lander and a rover to the lunar surface, showcasing India’s prowess in space exploration.
The Chandrayaan-2 mission encountered a setback on September 6, 2019, when the Vikram lander failed to achieve a soft landing. The unfortunate incident occurred approximately 13 minutes after the spacecraft initiated its descent. It is worth noting that, thus far, only three nations have successfully landed on the Moon—the United States, the former Soviet Union, and China.
3. Chandrayaan-3 Spacecraft
Comprising three essential components, the Chandrayaan-3 spacecraft is a remarkable feat of engineering. These components include the lander module, propulsion module, and rover.
3.1 Lander Module
The lander module of Chandrayaan-3 is meticulously designed to execute a gentle touchdown at a predetermined location on the lunar surface. Once safely landed, it will deploy the rover, enabling further exploration. The lander carries various scientific payloads to facilitate experiments and research activities on the Moon’s terrain.
The rover plays a crucial role in Chandrayaan-3’s mission. Equipped with advanced capabilities, it conducts chemical analysis of the lunar surface. By analyzing the composition of the Moon’s soil, the rover aims to gather valuable data and contribute to our understanding of Earth’s celestial neighbor.
3.3 Propulsion Module
The propulsion module serves a vital function in the Chandrayaan-3 mission. Its primary responsibility is transporting the lander and rover from the “launch vehicle injection” stage to a 100-kilometer circular polar lunar orbit. Once this stage is complete, the propulsion module separates from the other components. Additionally, the propulsion module features its scientific payload, which initiates operation post-separation.
4. Chandrayaan-3’s LVM-3
The Launch Vehicle Mark-III (LVM-3) is an impressive three-stage medium-lift launch vehicle developed by ISRO, previously known as the GSLV Mark III. Regarded as ISRO’s most powerful rocket, the LVM-3 will be employed for the Chandrayaan-3 mission. Let’s take a closer look at its notable features:
Height: The LVM-3 stands tall at 43.5 meters.
Diameter: It boasts a diameter of 4 meters.
Lift-off Mass: The rocket weighs a substantial 640 tonnes.
Payload Capacity: It can accommodate payloads of up to 8,000 kilograms for low-Earth orbit missions. For geostationary transfer orbit, it can carry approximately 4,000 kilograms of payload.
Cryogenic Upper Stage: Powered by CE-20, India’s largest cryogenic engine according to ISRO.
Solid Rocket Boosters: The LVM-3 employs two S200 solid rocket boosters to provide the required thrust during takeoff.
Core Stage: Two L110 liquid-stage Vikas rockets propel the core stage.
The integration of the Chandrayaan-3 spacecraft with the Launch Vehicle Mark-III marks a significant milestone in India’s space exploration endeavors. This mission aims to achieve what its predecessor could not—a successful soft landing on the Moon. With advanced components and cutting-edge technology, Chandrayaan-3 aspires to contribute valuable insights into lunar exploration and scientific research.