The Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) has been making continuous efforts to restore communication with the Vikram lander and Pragyan rover, both integral components of the Chandrayaan-3 mission. As of Friday, no signals had been successfully received from these lunar explorers.
The Chandrayaan-3 mission, including the Vikram lander and Pragyan rover, had a successful lunar landing on August 24. Despite ISRO's persistent endeavors, communication with these spacecraft remains elusive.
"Efforts have been made to establish communication with the Vikram lander and Pragyan rover to ascertain their wake-up condition. As of now, no signals have been received from them. Efforts to establish contact will continue," ISRO wrote on X, formerly Twitter.
Dr Jitendra Singh, the Union Minister of State for Science & Technology, also took to X to inform about the development.
"For the last several hours,Team #ISRO making best effort to establish contact with the Vikram lander and Pragyan rover to ascertain their wake-up condition after the sunrise on Moon. As of now, no signal has been received from them so far. This could be possibly because of prolonged spell of cold weather conditions upto -150 degree C during the just concluded lunar night of 14 Earth days. However, efforts to establish contact shall continue," Singh said.
More about Vikram lander and Pragyan rover
The lander-rover pair was originally designed for a limited operational window of 14 Earth days during which they transmitted valuable data to ISRO. However, once this period elapsed, the spacecraft entered a dormant state due to the extremely cold lunar conditions.
ISRO had initially scheduled to reactivate these two spacecraft on the evening of September 22. However, due to unforeseen circumstances, this attempt was postponed to September 23.
The decision to delay the reactivation was made in order to prioritize the safety of the spacecraft and to conduct additional tests and simulations necessary for a successful reactivation procedure.
Despite the obstacles faced, ISRO maintains an optimistic outlook regarding the possibility of restoring communication with the lunar explorers. The revitalization endeavors are of utmost importance, as they offer the potential to extend the mission of the Vikram lander and Pragyan rover by an additional 14 Earth days if they can be successfully reactivated.