“No Signals”: Chandrayaan-3’s Lander, Rover Still In Sleep Mode

The rover and the lander were put to sleep mode and were “safely parked” on September 2 after the lunar night had set in.

New Delhi: 

India’s space agency ISRO made efforts today to re-establish communication with rover Pragyan and lander Vikram, that are stationed near the south polar region of the moon, to ascertain their wake-up condition.

The rover and the lander were put to sleep mode and were “safely parked” on September 2 after the lunar night had set in. One day on the Moon is equivalent to 14 days on Earth.

ISRO, in its update on the Chandrayaan-3 Mission, said, “No signals have been received from them. Efforts to establish contact will continue.”

Lunar Night

The space agency had earlier planned to re-establish communication today. The lander and the rover were put into sleep mode on September 4 and 2 respectively. 

According to the mission directives, as dawn breaks and sunlight is back on the south-polar region of the Moon, the solar panels of the lander and the rover are expected to be optimally charged soon, and ISRO will try to revive them and check their health and ability to function. 

“We have put the lander and rover on sleep mode because the temperature would go as low as minus 120-200 degrees Celsius. From September 20 onwards, sunrise will be going on at the Moon, and by September 22 we hope that the solar panel and other things will be fully charged, so we will be trying to revive both the lander and rover, “ISRO’s Space Applications Centre Director Nilesh Desai earlier told PTI.

‘Shiv Shakti Point’

Prime Minister Narendra Modi earlier announced that the touchdown spot of the lander Vikram will be called ‘Shiv Shakti Point’. The Prime Minister made the announcement when he met ISRO scientists in Bengaluru to congratulate them on the success of the mission.

Additionally, the point on the Moon where Chandrayaan-2 crashlanded in 2019 has been named ‘Tiranga Point’.

Another Touchdown

Before being put into sleep mode, lander Vikram made a touchdown on the moon’s surface again after its engines were fired again and it was elevated by about 40 cm and hopped for about 30-40 cm. 

“Vikram Lander has exceeded Chandrayaan-3 mission objectives and successfully completed a hop experiment. On command, it fired the engines, elevated itself by about 40 cm as expected and landed safely at a distance of 30 – 40 cm away.”

After the historic landing, the Lander (Vikram) and the rover (Pragyan) performed different tasks on the lunar surface, including detecting the presence of sulphur and recording relative temperature. 

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