Chandrayaan-3- India’s space agency successfully launches rocket, propelling spacecraft into orbit on its way to the lunar south pole, marking a historic achievement that strengthens India’s position in the realm of space exploration.

On Friday afternoon, the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) initiated the launch of the LVM3 rocket from the primary spaceport in Andhra Pradesh, filling the sky with a trail of smoke and flames.

 

ISRO’s mission control declared approximately 16 minutes later that the rocket had accomplished its objective, successfully placing the Chandrayaan-3 lander into an Earth orbit. This trajectory will guide it towards an upcoming moon landing scheduled for next month.

In the event of a successful mission, India will join an elite group of countries that have achieved controlled lunar landings, including the United States, the former Soviet Union, and China.

Remarkably, the Chandrayaan-3 spacecraft will become the first to touch down at the lunar south pole, an area of immense interest for both space agencies and private space enterprises. This region holds significant allure due to the presence of water ice, which has the potential to support future space exploration and potentially even a space station.

The rocket soared into the sky from India’s primary spaceport at 2:35 p.m. local time (0905 GMT). A staggering audience of over 1.4 million people witnessed the launch through ISRO’s YouTube channel, showering their congratulations and expressing their patriotic fervor with the resounding slogan, ‘Jai Hind’ (Victory to India).

The eagerly anticipated moon mission, Chandrayaan-3, by India has been slated for launch on July 14, 2023.

In 2019, during ISRO’s Chandrayaan-2 mission, an orbiter was successfully deployed, but unfortunately, the lander and rover suffered a crash near the intended touchdown site for Chandrayaan-3.

Chandrayaan, derived from the Sanskrit term meaning ‘moon vehicle,’ encompasses a 2-meter-tall lander designed to deploy a rover near the lunar south pole. The rover is expected to conduct a series of experiments over a two-week period.

ISRO has set the target date for the lunar landing on August 23.

This launch marks India’s first significant mission following Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s government’s initiatives to stimulate investment in space launches and satellite-based ventures.

Expressing his sentiments on Twitter, Modi stated that the moon mission ‘will carry the hopes and dreams of our nation.’

During an event at the spaceport commemorating the launch, Deputy Minister of State for Science and Technology Jitendra Singh emphasised India’s commitment to playing a leading global role in the emerging world scenario as the country enters the next 25 years.

Since the opening of private launches in 2020, the number of space startups in India has more than doubled. Skyroot Aerospace, backed by investors such as Singapore’s sovereign wealth fund GIC, successfully launched India’s first privately built rocket late last year.

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