New Delhi | Jagran Trending Desk: India is planning to launch its new Moon mission 'Chandrayaan 3' early next year, Union Minister Jitendra Singh said on Sunday. Singh also said that 'Chandrayaan 3' will not have an orbiter and only a rover and lander will be sent to the lunar surface. He said that Chandrayaan 3 will be like a repeat mission of 'Chandrayaan 2', which was launched on July 22, 2019. The lunar mission, however, failed after its lander and rover crashed while attempting a landing on the lunar south pole on September 7, 2019.

However, the orbiter of 'Chandrayaan 2' was placed successfully and sending data to the earth. Following the crash landing of 'Chandrayaan 2', the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) had planned to send a new mission - Chandrayaan 3 - to the Moon by December 2020. However, due to the coronavirus pandemic, the launch of 'Chandrayaan 3' was postponed.

While the minister has not revealed the launch date, it is likely that ISRO may launch 'Chandrayaan 3' by March 2021. However, final confirmation on the launch date is yet to come from the government and ISRO.

Singh, who is handling the Space portfolio as a Minister of State (MoS), also shared a key finding by India's first lunar mission 'Chandrayaan-1', which was launched in 2008. The minister said that the images sent by 'Chandrayaan 1' have helped scientists understand the possible impact of Earth's atmosphere and that American space agency NASA has also recognised this.

"Images sent by ISRO mission Chandrayaan-1 indicate the possible impact of Earth's atmosphere on the Moon. World's leading Space institution NASA takes note of this finding," he wrote on Twitter.

Posted By: Shashikant Sharma