India has truly made history by becoming the first mission to land in the southern polar region of the moon as part of its lunar mission. This remarkable achievement by chandrayaan-3 marks a significant milestone in space exploration.

Along with this, India has joined a special club of countries that have achieved soft landing on the moon after the United States, the former Soviet Union, and China.

The Vikram lander of Chandrayaan-3 successfully touched down at the planned time of 18:04 local time (12:34 GMT) as per the schedule.

With Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s statement, ‘India is now on the moon,’ celebrations are echoing across the entire nation.

He expressed, ‘We have reached where no other country could. This is a moment of joy.’ Mr. Modi was watching this event live from South Africa, where he was participating in the BRICS summit.

The Chief of the Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO), Mr. Sreedhar Panicker Somanath, stated that the successful landing is not just our individual achievement; it is the effort of a generation of ISRO scientists.

India has achieved this feat just a few days after the accident on the Moon due to the loss of control of Russia’s Luna-25 spacecraft. The accident has also highlighted the difficulty of landing in the southern polar region, where the surface is described as “very uneven” and “filled with craters and rocks.”

India’s second lunar mission, which attempted a soft landing there in 2019, was unsuccessful – its lander and rover were lost. However, its orbiter survived.

The anxious period on Wednesday, known as “Vikram” in honor of ISRO founder Vikram Sarabhai, shortly before the lander’s touchdown, was when doubt gave birth to the mission’s lineage. A 26-kilogram rover dubbed “Prajn” (the Sanskrit word for wisdom) was housed within the creature.

The lander’s speed was gradually decreased until it was less than 1.68 kilometers per second, almost zero, allowing it to rest gently on the moon.

The six-wheeled rover will emerge from the lander’s belly in a couple of hours, according to scientists, and will then travel across the moon’s surface while negotiating its craters and rocks. It will gather vital information and take pictures that will be returned to Earth.

What will happen to India’s moon mission next?

The major objective of the mission is to find water-based ice on the Moon, which could one day support human habitation, according to scientists. The resources from this discovery might possibly be utilised to fuel space journeys to Mars and other far-off celestial planets. According to scientists, the portion of the surface that is always under shade is relatively large and may contain water ice formations.

To investigate the tectonic activity beneath the Moon’s surface, the near-surface environment, and its physical features, a lander and rover are equipped with five scientific equipment. By examining what is occurring underneath the lunar surface, these devices will aid in the exploration of tectonic activity.

The BBC was informed by a representative of ISRO (Indian Space Research Organization) that the rover is flying an Indian flag and has its insignia and emblem on its wheels. In doing so, they will be able to leave their imprint on the Moon’s surface as they explore its surface.

Chandrayaan-3, India’s third lunar mission, will build upon the successes of the previous moon missions and is expected to aid in discovering some ‘very important’ scientific insights, as stated by ISRO officials.

This comes 15 years after the country’s first lunar mission, Chandrayaan-1, which in 2008, discovered the presence of water molecules on the arid lunar surface and established the existence of a daytime environment on the moon.

Despite the setback in the soft landing of Chandrayaan-2, it wasn’t a complete failure. Its orbiter is still orbiting the moon, providing valuable imagery and data, and the Vikram lander’s analysis will assist in sending pictures and information back to Earth.

India is not the only country keeping an eye on the Moon – there is a growing global interest in it. In the near future, many other missions will be sent to the lunar surface. Scientists say that there is still much to understand about the Moon, often described as the gateway to deep space.

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