Russia launched its first lunar mission in the last 47 years, Luna-25, on August 11 aboard a Soyuz 2.1v rocket. The primary goal of this lunar mission is to make a soft landing on the South Pole of the Moon’s surface. With this, Russia attempts to become the first nation to land on the lunar south pole. However, it is not the only country aiming to achieve the feat this month. India is expecting Chandrayaan-3, its lunar mission launched by ISRO on July 14, is also expected to make a soft landing on the South Pole on August 23 or 24.
Chandrayaan-3 vs Luna-25: Which lunar mission will land first?
Both Chandrayaan-3 and Luna-25 share the same ambition. While launched almost a month apart both missions are expected to make a soft lunar landing one after the other. According to Russia’s space agency Roscosmos, as reported by Reuters, the lander is expected to touch down on the moon on August 21. The space agency previously estimated the landing date to be August 23. Chandrayaan-3, on the other hand, is expected to land on lunar surface around August 23.
Chandrayaan-3 vs Luna-25: Major difference
Russia’s Luna-25 is the country’s first lunar mission after almost 50 years. It was launched from the country’s Vostochny spaceport on August 11, 2023 aboard Soyuz 2.1v rocket. Meanwhile, ISRO’s Chandrayaan-3 was launched within four years of India’s last lunar mission, Chandrayaan-2. India launched its moon mission from the Satish Dhawan Space Centre in Sriharikota, on board the LVM-3 rocket.
Luna-25 will take a five-day journey, followed by spending 5-7 days in lunar orbit, before landing on moon. Meanwhile, Chandrayaan-3 is covering a journey of almost 40 days before it makes soft lunar landing.
India’s Chandrayaan-3 will have a mission lifespan of 14 Earth days or 1 moon days, while Luna-25 will have a much longer lifespan of approximately one year. A lander module (LM), a rover and a propulsion model (PM) are three major components of the Chandrayaan-3. Luna-25 consists of specialised instruments designed for soft lunar landings.
It is to be noted that the landing site of both the missions will be different, and hence there will be no chances of any mishap.