ISRO may postpone Chandrayaan-3 landing to Aug 27 if health is ‘abnormal’: Official
According to ISRO Space Applications Centre Director Nilesh Desai, the scientists' focus would be on reducing the craft's speed to prevent a crash-landing
As India waits with bated breath for Chandrayaan-3’s soft-landing on the Moon on Wednesday (August 23), a senior ISRO official has told news agency PTI that the space agency may postpone the touchdown to August 27 if the lander module’s health parameters are found to be “abnormal”.
According to ISRO Space Applications Centre Director Nilesh Desai, the focus of the scientists would be on reducing the speed of the spacecraft above the lunar surface. If the speed is not controlled, the module may crash-land on the Moon, he explained.
“The lander will try to land on the Moon’s surface from a height of 30 km on August 23, and its velocity at that time will be 1.68 km per second. Our focus will be on reducing that speed because Moon’s gravitational force will also play its part,” he told PTI in Ahmedabad on Tuesday.
“If we do not control that speed, there will be chances of a crash landing. If any health parameter (of the lander module) is found abnormal on August 23, we will postpone the landing to August 27,” he explained.
On Sunday, Russia’s Moon mission Luna-25 crashed on the lunar south pole and was declared a failure.
ISRO has planned the soft-landing of Chandrayaan-3 at 6.04 pm IST on August 23. Earlier on Wednesday, ISRO said the mission is on schedule. “Systems are undergoing regular checks. Smooth sailing is continuing,” ISRO said.
India’s third Moon mission was launched at 2.35 pm on July 14 from Sriharikota. ISRO’s second Moon mission, Chandrayaan-2, attempted a soft-landing on the Moon in September 2019, but failed in the final stages.
If Chandrayaan-3’s lander module can soft land on the lunar surface, India will join an elite club of countries that have achieved the feat — the US, the erstwhile Soviet Union, and China.(With agency inputs)