Last Updated on Thursday 24 August 2023 by Chetansingh Chauhan
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India’s Chandrayaan-3 moon rover has made a significant achievement by stepping onto the moon’s surface after a successful landing near the south pole. This marks the first time any country has accomplished such a feat, and India’s space agency, ISRO, shared the news on the messaging platform X (formerly Twitter).
The rover, named Pragyan (meaning “wisdom” in Sanskrit), is solar-powered and has six wheels. It has left the spacecraft that brought it to the moon and will now explore the relatively unknown region. Over the next two weeks, it will send back pictures and important scientific information.
This achievement cost about 6.15 billion Indian rupees (approximately $74.58 million). This was India’s second try at landing on the moon. The first attempt, Chandrayaan-2, successfully sent an orbiter but had trouble with the lander.
The moon’s south pole is special because it has water ice that can potentially be used for future missions. This ice could be turned into fuel, oxygen, and even drinking water. However, the rough and challenging terrain of this area makes landing difficult.
People across India celebrated this achievement with prayers in temples and special screenings in schools. Even Prime Minister Narendra Modi praised the success, saying it was a victory for all of humanity.
Elon Musk, who leads SpaceX, a company that launches spacecraft, also congratulated India for this “super cool” achievement.
India doesn’t spend as much money on space missions as some other countries do, but its space program has been growing. In 2014, India became the first Asian nation to send a spacecraft to circle Mars. They are also planning to send a probe to the sun in September.
ISRO has more plans, including sending humans into Earth’s orbit for a three-day mission next year. They are also teaming up with Japan for a moon mission in 2025 and planning to explore Venus in the next couple of years.