Chandrayaan-3: ISRO Makes Big Revelation Despite Threat From Luna-25

Chandrayaan-3

ISRO has further lowered the altitude of the Chandrayaan-3 spacecraft as it orbits the Moon despite the imminent threat posed by Russia’s Luna-25. Initially situated in an elliptical orbit with an Apolune (farthest point from the Moon) of 1,437 km, this adjustment was carried out on Monday. The Government-owned space agency has tweeted the information. Ever since ISRO has launched Chandrayaan-3 mission, the agency has been providing updates after the completion of each exercise.

Following this planned maneuver, the spacecraft’s Apolune has been brought below 200 km. Additionally, ISRO has scheduled another maneuver for August 16, aiming to transition the spacecraft into a circular orbit at 100 km. On August 17, the lander is slated to separate from this circular orbit. The lander will separate from the Propulsion Module in its quest to reach the Moon’s surface.

Within the framework of ISRO’s System for Safe and Sustainable Space Operations Management (IS4OM), a comprehensive evaluation of each lunar-bound maneuver involving orbit lowering is underway. This assessment aims to identify potential risks of close encounters with other lunar orbiters before any maneuvers are executed.

Earlier, on August 9, Chandrayaan-3 was guided into an orbit measuring 174 km x 1,437 km. Three days prior, on August 6, following its second Moon-bound maneuver, which took place after the initial lunar orbit insertion, the spacecraft’s Apolune altitude was reduced from 18,074 km to 4,313 km.

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Since its launch on July 14, Chandrayaan-3 has completed five Earth-bound maneuvers between July 15 and 25, gradually raising its altitude to over 1.2 lakh km at Apogee (the farthest point from Earth). On August 1, the spacecraft underwent a trans-lunar injection (TLI), aligning it with a trajectory towards the Moon at an altitude of approximately 3.6 lakh km. Subsequently, the lunar orbit insertion (LOI) took place on August 5, followed by three subsequent maneuvers. Interestingly, Russia’s Roscosmos launched Luna-25 mission to hit the same south pole with the target soft landing date of August 23.

Anand Narayanaswamy is the editor-in-chief of Netans. He was recognized as a Microsoft Most Valuable Professional (MVP) for 9 years (2002 to 2011) and again as a Microsoft MVP in Surface under Windows and Devices in January 2024. He worked as a Chief Technical Editor with ASPAlliance and was part of ASPInsider program. Anand has published several articles and reviews related to various software and hardware products for various software and technology related websites. He is also active on social media and also participates as an Influencer for various brands. Anand can be reached at admin@netans.com