The Chandrayaan-3 spacecraft from India has just sensed the very first evidence of ‘movement’ on the Moon. The fact that such a ‘movement’ is so uncommon is the single finest thing about it. The last time that something similar happened was actually in the 1970s! The rumblings were picked up and recorded by something known as ILSA (Instrument for Lunar Seismic Activity), an onboard instrument aboard the Vikram lander. If the data are found to be the result of natural seismic activity, it could finally allow scientists to comprehend how the Moon’s interior is structured.
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In-situ Scientific Experiments
Radio Anatomy of Moon Bound Hypersensitive Ionosphere and Atmosphere – Langmuir Probe (RAMBHA-LP) payload onboard Chandrayaan-3 Lander has made first-ever measurements of the near-surface Lunar plasma environment over the… pic.twitter.com/n8ifIEr83h
— ISRO (@isro) August 31, 2023
ILSA’s primary objective is to measure ground vibrations generated by natural quakes, impacts, and artificial events. The vibrations recorded during the rover’s navigation on August 25, 2023, are depicted in the figure, explained by ISRO (Indian Space Research Organisation) in a statement.
Even though it has been less than a few weeks since Chandrayaan-3 arrived on the Moon, it has already done a slew of scientific studies and found the first elements near the south pole of the Moon. And here’s the thing. Since we do not yet have a complete understanding of the configuration of the Moon’s gizzards, scientists have been eager to obtain more. The availability of seismic data would be extremely helpful in resolving that issue. As was indicated before, the most reliable seismic information currently available for the Moon comes from the Apollo program, which carried out missions in the late 1960s and early 1970s to gather the data.
The two explorers, Vikram and Pragyan, will awaken from their rest on September 22, at which time they will resume their investigations of the strange region of the Moon’s south pole. Both the lander and the rover have entered something known as sleep modes at this time. This is because darkness has fallen over the place where they are on the Moon. The phase is saod to last for around 14 days.
Cool fact: Vikram and Pragyan can sleep throughout the night thanks to their rechargeable batteries.
What are your expectations when it comes to India’s Chandrayaan-3?