'Amazing journey so far': An update from Chandrayaan-3 before it enters lunar orbit today

Spacecraft's Lunar Orbit Injection is set for around 7 pm


India's ambitious lunar mission Chandrayaan-3 is gearing up for the next big step in its journey—entering the lunar orbit. The spacecraft has covered about two-thirds of the distance to the Moon since its launch on July 14, the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) said on Friday.

The official Twitter page of the Chandrayaan-3 on Saturday shared an update on behalf of the mission. It stated: "Hello! This is #Chandrayaan3 with a special update. I want to let everyone know that it has been an amazing journey for me so far and now I am going to enter the Lunar Orbit today (August 5, 2023) at around 19:00 hrs IST. To know where I am and what I'm doing, stay tuned!"

Since its launch from Sriharikota last month, the mission underwent a series of five orbit raises to gradually elevate the spacecrafts' orbit. on August 1 in a key manoeuvre—a slingshot move— the craft was sent successfully towards the moon from Earth's orbit.

Following this trans-lunar injection, the Chandrayaan-3 spacecraft escaped from orbiting the Earth and began following a path that would take it to the vicinity of the moon.

The Lunar Orbit Injection (LOI) is set for around 7 pm on Saturday. After this, the spacecraft will continue to orbit for a few days and get closer to the moon's surface, experts said. This allows the spacecraft to ensure it is positioned carefully before descending onto the lunar surface.

The ISRO plans to attempt a soft landing on the lunar surface on August 23.