Moons

Blogs about any natural satellite.

A simulation of Odysseus Moon landing (Image courtesy Intuitive Machines / NASA TV)

It was the afternoon in the USA when Intuitive Machines’ Nova-C Odysseus lander attempted its Moon landing in the Malapert A crater. It was an autonomous maneuver that constituted the crucial step of the IM-1 mission. It took about 10 minutes to receive the first faint signals from Odysseus but they were invaluable in confirming the Moon landing. At Intuitive Machines’ mission control center, work began to have regular communications that allow them to understand Odysseus’ exact status and receive the data collected, including images.

Image from the SLIM lander Moon landing simulation

It was the night between Friday and Saturday in Japan when the Japanese space agency JAXA’s SLIM lander attempted to land on the Moon but things got complicated. Only after a couple of hours, a press conference was held in which it was announced that the Moon landing was successful but there were some problems that could shorten the mission if SLIM fails to recharge its batteries. Meanwhile, Japan has become the fifth nation to put a robotic vehicle on the Moon.

Animation of the Vikram lander and the Pragyan rover during the moon landing (on the left) and the real situation (on the right) (Image courtesy ISRO)

The Vikram lander and the Pragyan rover of the Indian mission Chandrayaan 3, launched on July 14, have successfully landed on the Moon. The idea at the Indian space agency ISRO was to replicate what was done almost exactly four years ago in the Chandrayaan 2 mission, eliminating the problems encountered on that occasion in order to achieve success. The hard lesson was learned and this time, the vehicles successfully completed the insidious maneuver of landing on the Moon. India joins the small club of nations that successfully sent a vehicle to the Moon.

Photo of the Moon surface taken by the Luna 25 lander (Photo courtesy Roscosmos)

The Russian space agency Roscosmos has confirmed that its Luna 25 lander crashed on the Moon following an anomaly in one of the maneuvers that was supposed to lead to its Moon landing on Monday. The problems began on Saturday, when there was the problem and communications were lost. An examination of the telemetry data received up to that point led to the conclusion that the impulse was excessive, leading to a trajectory that caused a crash. Yet another problem in the Russian space program will bring consequences yet to be assessed in the Luna-Glob program which is based on increasingly ambitious missions for the next few years and had already accumulated years of delay.