New Delhi: Chandrayaan-1 was India’s first mission to the moon. It launched Oct. 22, 2008 from the Satish Dhawan Space Center in Sriharikota, India, aboard a Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle rocket.
It achieved lunar orbit on Nov. 8. It released a Moon Impact Probe on Nov. 14 that deliberately crashed into the moon later that day.
Chandrayaan-1 is best known for finding evidence of water ice on the moon. NASA made the announcement on September 2009, based on data collected by the agency’s Moon Mineralogy Mapper. The instrument found evidence of hydroxyl (a form of water, hydrogen and oxygen) in the moon’s regolith or dust. On Sept. 6, Chandrayaan-2 released the Vikram moon lander, but mission officials lost contact with it as it was just 1.3 miles (2.1 km) above the surface. Although the lander was lost, the orbiter continues to work well. It carries eight different instruments and continues to send back high-definition imagery of the lunar surface.
Chandrayaan-2 was India’s second mission to the moon. It launched from the Satish Dhawan Space Center in Sriharikota, India, aboard a Geosynchronous Satellite Launch Vehicle (GSLV) rocket on July 22, 2019. It made it to lunar orbit on Aug. 19, 2019.
Chandrayaan-3 will build upon the “lessons learned” from the unsuccessful landing that took place during Chandrayaan-2, ISRO officials said.