Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) is likely to launch India’s third lunar mission ‘Chandrayaan-3’ in the third quarter of 2022.
- Chandrayaan-3 is a lander-and rover-specific mission, which will demonstrate India’s capability of soft landing on a celestial body, with the rover then communicating with Earth via the existing orbiter from Chandrayaan-2 and taking images 100 km from Moon’s orbit.
- The orbiter has an estimated lifespan of seven years.
- The unique exploration of Chandrayaan-3 aims at studying not just one area of the Moon but all the areas combining the exosphere, the surface as well as the sub-surface in a single mission.
- The Lunar South pole is especially interesting because the lunar surface area that remains in shadow is much larger than that at the North Pole. Further, there could be a possibility of the presence of water in permanently shadowed areas around it.
- In addition, the South Pole region has craters that are cold traps and contain a fossil record of the early Solar System.