The entire mission operations of Chandrayaan-3, right from the launch till landing, "happened flawlessly" as per the timeline, the team that led India's third mission to the Moon said on Wednesday.
They credited the combined effort of the entire team during the past four years for the success of the Chandrayaan-3 mission.
"It's a great moment of happiness. On behalf of the team it gives me immense satisfaction on achieving this goal as the Project Director of the mission. The entire mission operations right from launch till landing happened flawlessly as per the timeline," Project Director of Chandrayaan-3 P Veeramuthuvel said.
Addressing the Chandrayaan-3 team at the Mission Operations Complex, he said India has become the fourth country to demonstrate soft landing on the Moon's surface and the first country to arrive at the south pole region of the Moon.
Thanking the navigation guidance and control team, propulsion team, sensors team and all the mainframe subsystems teams, who have brought success to the mission, Veeramuthuvel also expressed his gratitude to the critical operations review committee for thoroughly reviewing the mission operations right from launch till date.
"The target was on spot, because of the review process," he said, as he acknowledged the contribution of Chandrayaan-3 project executives working across various ISRO centres.
India on Wednesday scripted history as ISRO's ambitious third Moon mission Chandrayaan-3's Lander Module (LM) touched down on the lunar surface, making it only the fourth country to accomplish the feat, and first to reach the uncharted south pole of Earth's only natural satellite.
The LM comprising the lander (Vikram) and the 26 kg rover (Pragyan), made the soft landing near the south polar region of the Moon this evening. The Chandrayaan-3 mission was launched on July 14 onboard Launch Vehicle Mark-III (LVM-3) rocket, for a 41-day voyage to reach near the lunar south pole.
M Sankaran, Director of U R Rao Satellite Centre, where the satellite was built, said, ”Today's success has put more responsibility on Team ISRO, because we have set the bar so high, and nothing less spectacular than this is going to be inspiring any of us in the future.
"As the prime minister mentioned, we will now be looking at putting man in space, putting a spacecraft around Venus and landing a craft on Mars," he said, adding that work on all these activities have been going on for a few years and ”this success will inspire and spur the team to take those efforts strongly to make the country proud again and again.”
Noting that today Team ISRO has achieved what it had set out to achieve in 2019, Sankaran said, "It was delayed by about four years, but we have done it."
Pointing out that the entire project team has been "sleeping, eating and breathing" Chandrayaan for the past four years, he said, "As a person who has been watching their efforts for the past four years along with them, my heart goes out to them. The amount of effort is tremendous. That is what ISRO is all about and that is what our organisation has taught us to do."
Chandrayaan-3 is a follow-on mission to Chandrayaan-2 and its objectives are to demonstrate safe soft landing on the lunar surface, roving on the Moon, and to conduct in-situ scientific experiments.
Chandrayaan-2 had failed in its lunar phase when its lander 'Vikram' crashed into the surface of the Moon minutes before the touchdown, following anomalies in the braking system in the module while attempting the landing on September 7, 2019.
Chandrayaan's maiden mission was in 2008, and its objective was to place an unmanned spacecraft in orbit around the Moon.
Chandrayaan-3 Mission Operations Director M Srikanth thanked the team and said all the mission operations were carried out "flawlessly".
Associate Project Director of Chandrayaan-3 Kalpana Kalahasti, who was visibly overjoyed by the success, said, ”This will remain the most memorable and happiest moment for Team Chandrayaan-3.”
"We have achieved our goal flawlessly. From the day we started rebuilding our spacecraft after the Chandrayaan-2 experience, it has been breathe in, breathe out Chandrayaan-3 for our team. Starting from the reconfiguration to all the special tests and the assimilations we have conducted meticulously, this has been possible because of the team effort and guidance from seniors," she added.