India triumphs where Russia failed with historic moon landing
India made history on Wednesday when its lunar mission became the first to land in the lunar south polar region. The triumph came 72 hours after a Russian attempt to make a similar landing ended in spectacular failure.
India is now part of an elite club of nations seeking a soft landing on the moon, following the US, the former Soviet Union and China, according to the BBC reports.
India erupted in festivities after the successful landing of the robotic lander carrying a rover in its belly.
— RVCJ Media (@RVCJ_FB) August 23, 2023
According to the BBC, Prime Minister Narendra Modi called the successful landing “a joyful occasion”.
“We have reached a point where no other country can reach,” he said. Modi watched the event live from South Africa where he attends the Brics summit.
As India celebrated, Russia is still trying to figure out exactly where things went wrong.
As Breitbart News reported, the Russian Luna-25 spacecraft tumbled into uncontrolled Earth orbit on Sunday and crashed into the lunar surface, depriving it of the chance to get there ahead of India.
The Russian space agency Roscosmos has said it lost contact with Luna-25 on Saturday, 47 minutes after a thruster hit failed during an orbital adaptation burn. The failure created an “emergency” that Roscomos did not elaborate on.
“The device moved in an unpredictable orbit and ceased to exist due to a collision with the surface of the moon,” Roscomos said.
The Luna-25 mission, launched from Vostochny Cosmodrome on August 10, was Russia’s first lunar shot since 1976.
The United States, Israel, China, Japan and India have announced ten more moon missions over the next two years. NASA said Last week, the launch tower for the crewed Artemis-2 mission moved to the Kennedy Space Center in Florida, where extensive testing has begun in preparation for a 10-day crewed flight to lunar orbit.
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