In a groundbreaking achievement, the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) has announced that the Pragyan rover’s Laser-Induced Breakdown Spectroscope (LIBS) has confirmed the presence of sulphur on the lunar surface near the south pole. This confirmation marks the first-ever in-situ measurements of sulphur on the Moon.
The rover’s spectroscope also identified other elements as expected, including Aluminium, Calcium, Ferrous (Iron), Chromium, Titanium, Manganese, Silicon, and Oxygen. ISRO highlighted that the search for hydrogen on the lunar surface is currently underway.
ISRO stated, “Preliminary analyses, graphically represented, have unveiled the presence of Aluminum (Al), Sulphur (S), Calcium (Ca), Iron (Fe), Chromium (Cr), and Titanium (Ti) on the lunar surface. Further measurements have revealed the presence of manganese (Mn), silicon (Si), and oxygen (O). Thorough investigation regarding the presence of Hydrogen is underway.”
The Laser-Induced Breakdown Spectroscope instrument used for these measurements was developed at the Laboratory for Electro-Optics Systems (LEOS)/ISRO in Bengaluru.
These developments follow ISRO’s recent announcement that the Pragyan rover is diligently working to uncover more secrets of the moon. The rover was successfully deployed from the ‘Vikram’ lander after the Chandrayaan 3 mission achieved a successful landing on the moon’s south pole on August 23.
A video released by ISRO on August 26 showcased the Pragyan rover’s exploration around the ‘Shiv Shakti’ Point, the designated landing site of the Chandrayaan 3 mission. ISRO shared this achievement on its official social media platform, highlighting the rover’s pursuit of lunar secrets.
Recently, the rover encountered a four-meter diameter crater located just three meters ahead of its position on the lunar surface. The rover’s navigation was adjusted to navigate around this obstacle, demonstrating its adaptability and agility in overcoming challenges.
ISRO’s historic achievement on August 23 marked India’s distinction as the first country to successfully touch down on the moon’s South Pole. The ongoing progress of the Chandrayaan 3 mission, including the Pragyan rover’s scientific findings, holds promise for unveiling further insights about the moon’s uncharted territories.
Sources By Agencies