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India's history-making spacecraft beams back the first picture from the Moon's south pole

India's history-making spacecraft beams back the first picture from the Moon's south pole

The lander's Horizontal Velocity Camera captured these historic images.

Photos of the moon’s south pole have emerged after India's history-making Chandrayaan-3 spacecraft landed earlier this week.

The Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) shared images that the spacecraft captured after its successful historic moon touchdown.

The first set of four images shows the lunar south pole and its pockmarked surface accompanied by a shadow from the spacecraft’s leg.

The lander's Horizontal Velocity Camera captured these pictures as it neared the moon's surface.

An additional image shared a little later shows a glimpse of the landing site.

ISRO captioned the post: "The communication link is established between the Ch-3 Lander and MOX-ISTRAC, Bengaluru.”

"Chandrayaan-3 chose a relatively flat region on the lunar surface," the agency added in a separate post.

The Chandrayaan-3 spacecraft successfully landed on the elusive part of our closest celestial object in the cosmos, becoming the first country to do so.

However, India is the fourth country to successfully land on the moon after the United States, the former Soviet Union and China.

While other expeditions to the moon have been shorter, Chandrayaan-3 departed Earth more than a month ago when it boarded a rocket from Satish Dhawan Space Centre north of Chennai on July 14.

Indians across the country were glued to their TVs as they watched the spacecraft reach its target on Wednesday (August 23).

India Prime Minister Narendra Modi called the moment ‘unforgettable’ and said it marks the beginning of a ‘new India’.


"India is now on the moon. India has reached the south pole of the moon — no other country has achieved that. We are witnessing history,” he added.

Physics student Jyothi also shared: "As a country, I think it's very important because although we have a very good space program, India is considered a very under-developed country.

"This is a big landmark, we have the potential, we have the talent, and now we're doing it."

This is India’s second attempt to land on the moon’s south pole.

The country was left devastated four years ago when Chandrayaan-2 crashed into the moon after a software glitch.

China is expected to land on the lunar south pole in 2026 with its Chang'e 7 robotic exploration mission.

The US is also working to have humans land on the lunar south through the Artemis programme run by NASA.

Featured Image Credit: X/ISRO. ISRO/AFPTV/AFP via Getty Images

Topics: News, Science, Technology, Space, World News