After traversing over 100 meters on the Moon’s surfafe, the Chandrayaan-3’s Prgyan Rover is now safely parked and set into Sleep mode.
P Veeramuthuvel, the project director for the Chandrayaan-3 mission, said, “Our scientific objective is completely met, and in fact, it exceeded our expectations, and this is why we are all very happy. Our director of URSC, chairman ISRO, and all center directors who have guided us are delighted.”
“We landed on the second day (of sunlight on the Moon). There are 14 days of sunlight, but we cannot fully utilize these 14 days because we had to have a sun elevation angle of six degrees.”
“The optimum sun elevation angle of six degrees is not available through the 14 days of sunlight on the moon where the sun elevation is lower than six degrees at the beginning and end of the lunar day.”
“Sleep has to be commanded. Our mission life, as per the plan, is one lunar day, equivalent to 14 Earth days. Our entire design is for that. We have built in a very innovative feature of sleep and wake up. If it survives on the lunar night when temperatures go down to a very low level of up to minus 150 degrees Celsius, there is no guarantee that systems will work, but we have hope. That is all.”
As the rover is in sleep mode, two payloads- APXS and LIBS- are turned off. As per the reports, the rover’s battery is fully charged.
ISRO tweeted, “The solar panel is oriented to receive the light at the next sunrise expected on September 22, 2023. The receiver is kept on.”
On the other hand, the Vikram lander exceeded its mission objectives. It successfully underwent a hop experiment. It lifted itself to around 40 cm as instructed, started the engines, and safely landed between 30 and 40 cm away.
This “kick-start” inspires upcoming sample returns and human expeditions. Therefore, it’s important!
All systems functioned normally and are in good condition. After the experiment, deployed Ramp, ChaSTE, and ILSA were folded back and redeployed successfully.