ISRO (Indian Space Research Organisation) said on Wednesday that the Chandrayaan-2 spacecraft has completed its third lunar orbit maneuver successfully. The operation to bring India's lunar mission closer to the Moon's surface began at 9:04 AM IST. It finished the orbit in 1190 seconds which is exactly 19.83 minutes. ISRO reported of this success shortly after and also said that the next lunar orbit maneuver is scheduled to take place on August 30 between 6 to 7 PM IST.
The Chandrayaan-2 spacecraft used the onboard propulsion system to bring about the 3rd lunar orbit maneuver. The present lunar orbit has brought the spacecraft closer to the Moon where the orbit achieved is 179 km x 1412 km. The next orbit will bring it further in proximity to successfully soft-land on the surface of the Moon. ISRO also tweeted out an artist depiction of the Chandrayaan-2 spacecraft's orbit.
#ISRO— ISRO (@isro) August 28, 2019
Third Lunar bound orbit maneuver for Chandrayaan-2 spacecraft was performed successfully today (August 28, 2019) at 0904 hrs IST.
For details please visit https://t.co/EZPlOSLap8 pic.twitter.com/x1DYGPPszw
The spacecraft has completed three successful lunar orbit maneuvers and will prepare for the fourth lunar orbit maneuver which will finally get it as close as 100km from the lunar surface. The Vikram lander will finally separate from the orbiter to land on the surface of the Moon on September 7. On August 26, ISRO released pictures of the lunar surface captured by Chandrayaan-2's Terrain Mapping Camera -2 (TMC-2). The images showed various impact craters like Sommerfeld, Kirkwood, Jackson, Mitra, Mach, Korolev and more. On 20th August, Chandrayaan-2 completed the Lunar Orbit Insertion (LOI) maneuver which inserted the spacecraft in a lunar orbit around the moon.
India's Chandryaan-2 spacecraft will attempt to bring the answers to many fundamental questions about the solar system that can be discovered by exploring the craters, valleys, and hills on the moon. Moon is also a good way to test the technologies required for future missions in discovering space and India will become a significant contributor in uncovering the secrets of the universe.