The successful Moon landing of the Vikram lander of the Chandrayaan-3 mission is an impressive demonstration of the technical capabilities of the Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO).
With this success, India has become the fourth country to successfully land on the lunar surface in a controlled manner.
This is particularly encouraging given the partial failure of Chandrayaan-2’s crash landing and the recent failure of Russia’s mission to reach the Moon.
In the next phase of the Chandrayaan-3 mission, the Pragyan rover will be ejected from the Vikram lander.
Before this, the lander will check the local conditions and its systems for about four-five hours. # ₹₹Pragyan will be landed with the help of a ramp and after that it will carry out some experiments on the south pole of the moon.
Significantly, no one had reached the south pole of the moon before.
It is expected to analyze the density of soil and plasma at the surface, study the potential of heat conduction below the surface, and study local seismicity.
Along with this, it will also study related to the orbits of the Earth and the Moon. It is estimated that the rover will remain active for the next fortnight ie one lunar day and the results of its studies will increase our knowledge about the moon.
Apart from the scientific know-how related to the sky, the technical capability developed for such missions is usually used effectively on the ground.
We have seen this happen in the previous missions of ISRO. Our space agency also
provides services with many commercial uses.
ISRO is an important stakeholder in the Indian communication infrastructure.
It also provides important information about weather services, geographical and geo-mapping information.
Apart from this, it is also commercially successful and economical in terms of launching satellites.
The capabilities that the agency has built up in telemetry and telecommand systems, power systems and management, on-board computers, navigation, radiation shielding, heat shielding, propulsion systems, etc. will prove to be very useful in the future.
For example this landing was almost automatic. The Moon is 1.5 light seconds away from India (light travels 300,000 kilometers in a second), making it nearly impossible to control the final stage landing from Earth.
The improvement in India’s space policies also means that a large number of private companies contributed to this mission.
This means that many Indian companies have already worked on advanced technology and so that they can prepare components etc. for Chandrayaan-3.
Apart from this, in principle, ISRO will also share the intellectual property and knowledge acquired from this mission and other missions.
This means that the capacity of private companies will increase further.
Already around 400 Indian startups are focused on space while many big companies like Larsen & Toubro, Paras Defence, Bharat Heavy Electricals Limited, Godrej & Boyce and HAL etc also contributed to this mission and the share price of listed companies jumped. .
Further collaboration between the private sector and ISRO will allow these companies to take advantage of new opportunities in the global space industry and may increase ISRO’s market share after demonstrating this technological capability. This may be significant as ISRO’s share in the global space technology business is barely two per cent.
It should not be overlooked that many of these technologies can be used in the defence sector.
This thing will accelerate the program of self-reliance in the defence sector. The excitement generated by such success should not be underestimated.
There would be many school children who would have seen this mission and some of them would surely have been inspired to master science subjects in future.