India is now on the moon and the success belongs to all humanity, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said on Wednesday as Chandrayaan-3 successfully landed on the lunar surface.
Addressing ISRO scientists virtually from Johannesburg, he said India made a resolve “on the Earth and fulfilled it on the Moon”.
“This is a moment to cherish forever,” Mr. Modi said, noting that India has reached the South Pole of the moon, where no country had ventured so far.
“India is now on the moon and now is the time to walk on the ‘Chandra Path’,” the Prime Minister said.
“India’s successful moon mission is not India’s alone...Our approach of one earth, one family one future is resonating across the globe...Moon mission is based on the same human centric approach. So, this success belongs to all of humanity,” Modi said noting that this stupendous feat has been achieved during India’s G20 presidency.
The Chandrayaan-3’s landing on the moon is a historic moment and sounds the bugle for a developed India, Modi said. “We are witness to the new flight of new India. New history has been written,” the Prime Minister said.
Mr. Modi, who is in the South African city to attend the five-nation BRICS Summit, waved the tricolour the moment Chandrayaan-3 landed on the moon.
“Though I was in South Africa for the BRICS Summit, my heart and soul was here (in India),” the Prime Minister said.
Mr. Modi joined the scientists gathered at ISRO’s Telemetry, Tracking and Command Network (ISTRAC) near here virtually
With this touchdown on moon in second attempt in four years, India has become the fourth country to master the technology of soft-landing on the lunar surface after the US, China and the erstwhile Soviet Union.
Chandrayaan-3 is a follow-on mission to Chandrayaan-2 and its objectives are to demonstrate safe and soft-landing on the lunar surface, roving on the Moon, and to conduct in-situ scientific experiments.
Chandrayaan-2 had failed in its lunar phase when its lander ‘Vikram’ crashed into the surface of the Moon minutes before the touch down following anomalies in the braking system in the lander while attempting a landing on September 7, 2019. Chandrayaan’s maiden mission was in 2008.
The ₹600 crore Chandrayaan-3 mission was launched on July 14 onboard Launch Vehicle Mark-III (LVM-3) rocket, for a 41-day voyage to reach near the lunar south pole.
The soft-landing took place days after Russia’s Luna-25 spacecraft crashed into the Moon after spinning out of control.
The lander and the six-wheeled rover (with total mass of 1,752 kg) are designed to operate for one lunar daylight period (about 14 Earth days) The lander with four legs, had multiple sensors to ensure a safe touchdown, including an accelerometer, altimeters, Doppler velocimeter, inclinometer, touchdown sensor, and a suite of cameras for hazard avoidance and positional knowledge.
The lander carries the rover in a compartment with a ramp for deployment onto the surface.