Chandrayaan-3: ISRO scientists wait for Pragyan rover to roll outtext_fields
Bengaluru: The rover of Chandrayaan-3 is yet to be rolled out and it will be done at an appropriate time to study the moon's surface.
Chandrayaan-3 lunar mission achieved a flawless landing today near the moon's South Pole, marking a significant accomplishment in space exploration. The subsequent key step was the deployment of the Pragyan rover, tasked with transmitting data from its location to the lander, which will then relay the information to the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO).
However, the deployment of the Pragyan rover required patience. Its launch was delayed to allow time for the dust stirred up by the Vikram lander's touchdown to settle. The moon's lower gravity causes dust to behave differently than on Earth.
Scientists at ISRO took care to ensure that the rover wasn't rolled out prematurely, which could potentially damage its cameras and sensitive equipment. The process took less time than initially anticipated, as ISRO Chief S Somnath had previously mentioned.
"The rover will come out in a few hours. Sometimes it takes a day also... Once the rover comes out, it will do two experiments," Somnath had stated, capturing the excitement of the moment immediately following the landing. "We are looking at a very exciting time after Pragyan's entry... It will do experiments for 14 days," he had further elaborated.
The Pragyan rover's initial actions will involve extending its solar arrays and being guided out with a wire connected to the lander Vikram. Once securely positioned on the lunar surface, the wire will be disconnected, and the rover will commence its scientific mission.
This scientific endeavor will span 14 days, equivalent to one moon day. As the lunar night falls, the solar-powered equipment is expected to temporarily cease functioning.
Given the presence of water detected in the region, the data collected by Pragyan holds immense significance. This discovery was initially made by a NASA instrument aboard ISRO's Chandrayaan-1 probe back in 2009.
Chandrayaan-3's landing near the moon's South Pole represents a pioneering achievement and an opportunity to explore potential water sources. The presence of water holds considerable promise for future moon missions, as it could serve as a valuable resource for drinking water, equipment cooling, oxygen production, and the unraveling of clues about the origins of Earth's oceans.