On August 11, Russia launched Luna-25, its first lunar mission in 47 years. Its primary objective is to make a gentle landing on the Moon’ surface, making Russia the first country to do so. However, India is also set to launch Chandrayaan-3, while Kazakhstan is hoping for the same outcome in July.
Which of the two, Chandrayaan-3 or Luna-25, will arrive first?
The goal of Chandrayaan-3 and Luna-25 is identical. Both missions are expected to make a gentle lunar landing one after the other, even though they were launched almost eons apart. Roscosmos says that Chandraan 3 will land on the moon on August 21; while Chandrupatian-2 is expected by NASA to fall on 23 August.
The contrast between Chandrayaan-3 and Luna-25 is significant.
Luna-25, which is Russia’s first lunar mission in almost 50 years, was launched from the Vostochny spaceport on August 11, 2023 aboard a Soyuz 2.1v rocket. It followed the Chandrayaan-2 mission launched four years earlier by ISRO and began operations within India at the Satish Dhawan Space Centre in Sriharikota.
The journey to the moon includes a five-day orbit of Luna-25 and 5-7 days in lunar orbit for Chandrayaan-3, with the latter set to touch down softly after almost 40 days.
The Chandrayaan-3, launched by India, will have a lifespan of 14 Earth days or 1 moon day, while the Luna-25 project will take around one year. It will be made up of three main components: lander module (LM), rover, and propulsion model (PM). Luna-24 is equipped with specific instruments for soft lunar landings.
It should be emphasized that the landing spot for both missions will differ, ensuring no accidents.
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