The launch of Chandrayaan-3 is India’s attempt to do a soft landing on the lunar surface for the second time having failed in 2019 with the Chandrayaan-2 mission.

The Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) successfully launched its third lunar mission Chandrayaan 3 on board the heavy-lift GSLV Mark 3 (LVM 3) rocket from the Satish Dhawan Space Centre in Andhra Pradesh’s Sriharikota on Friday.

Around 20 minutes after the spacecraft took off, the ISRO announced that Chandrayaan-3 is in its precise orbit and has begun its journey to the Moon. It added that the health of spacecraft is “normal”.

Chandrayaan-3's journey from Earth to the moon is estimated to take about a month and the landing is expected on August 23, covering a distance of over 300,000 km.

Upon landing, the spacecraft is expected to operate for one lunar day - which is approximately 14 Earth days.

The spacecraft consists of an indigenous propulsion module, a lander module, and a rover with the objective of developing and demonstrating new technologies required for inter-planetary missions. It also carries a Spectro-polarimetry of Habitable Planetary Earth (SHAPE) payload to study the spectral and polarimetric measurements of earth from the lunar orbit.

According to ISRO, the spacecraft weighs around 3,900 kilograms. The mission is ISRO's follow-up attempt after the Chandrayaan-2 mission failed to do a soft landing on the lunar surface in 2019. If Chandrayaan-3 is successful, it will make India the fourth country after US, China, and Russia, to land its spacecraft on Moon.

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