Mission accomplished, India puts Moon rover to ‘sleep’

A site of the moon as located by the Chandrayaan-3 lander whilst lunar orbit insertion on Aug 5. India has switched off its Moon rover, the new craft to touch down the lunar South Pole, after it finished its two-week assignment creating experiments, the nation’s space agency said. The Pragyan rover from the Chandrayaan-3 spacecraft was “adjusted into sleep mode” but with batteries charged and receiver on, the Indian Space Research Organisation (Isro) said in a post on X, formerly Twitter, late on Saturday.

“Aiming for a victorious awakening for another set of assignments,” Isro said. “Else, it will always stay there as India’s lunar ambassador.” By touching down a spacecraft on the Moon, India collaborated with the United States, China and the previous Soviet Union. It happened to reach beyond them in touching down the never discovered before South Pole, very short time after Russia’s Luna-25 crashed on a same try.

Chandrayaan-3’s textbook touchdown after an unsuccessful try in 2019 triggered jubilation in the world’s most-populated nation. The media recognizes the landing as India’s greatest scientific feat. Pragyan travelled more than 100m, agreeing to the presence of sulphur, iron, oxygen and other elements on the Moon, Isro said. Currently India is aiming for the victory of a probe brought on Saturday to observe the Sun, observing solar winds that can lead to hindrances on Earth commonly recognized as auroras.