ISRO to launch Moon mission Chandrayaan-3 on July 14

Bengaluru: Indian Space Research Organisation (Isro) on Thursday announced that the moon mission Chandrayaan-3 will be launched on July 14. Isro’s new heavylift launch vehicle LVM-3 carrying an integrated module will lift off at 2:35 pm from Satish Dhawan Space Centre in Sriharikota, Andhra Pradesh.

ISRO took to Twitter to announce the launch date. “Announcing the launch of Chandrayaan-3: 🚀LVM3-M4/Chandrayaan-3 🛰️Mission: The launch is now scheduled for 📆July 14, 2023, at 2:35 pm IST from SDSC, Sriharikota,” the space agency tweeted.

During G20 Space economy leaders meeting on launch of Chandrayaan-3, Isro chairman S Somnath said that Chandrayaan-3 will lift off on July 14 and if everything goes well, it will land on August 23.

“On July 14 at 2:35 pm, Chandrayaan-3 will lift off and if everything goes well it will land on August 23. The date is decided based on when is the sunrise on the moon, it will depend on the calculations, but if it gets delayed then we will have to keep the landing for the next month in September,” he said.

On Wednesday, Isro integrated the encapsulated assembly containing Chandrayaan-3 with the launch vehicle LVM3 at SDSC.

Isro chairman S Somnath had last month announced that they are planning for the launch day of its third lunar mission between July 13-19.

“Chandrayaan-3 is almost ready. Final integration and testing are almost complete. Still, some more tests are pending, so we want to do it a little later. There were two slots available one in February and another in June. We would like to take June (2023) slot for the launch,” he had said.

Chandrayaan-3 is a follow-on mission to Chandrayaan-2 to demonstrate end-to-end capability in safe landing and roving on the lunar surface.

According to the officials, the mission carries scientific instruments to study the thermophysical properties of the lunar regolith, lunar seismicity, lunar surface plasma environment and elemental composition in the vicinity of the landing site.

In March this year, the Chandrayaan-3 spacecraft successfully completed the essential tests that validated its capability to withstand the harsh vibration and acoustic environment that the spacecraft would face during its launch.

Chandrayaan-2, India’s second mission to the moon, was launched on July 22, 2019, from Satish Dhawan Space Center, Sriharikota. But the mission failed after the Vikram lunar lander crashed on the Moon during the early hours of September 6.