Russia Crashed Its Lunar Mission: India’s Chandrayaan Was Successful- Why?

Moon Landing

Now that the world is celebrating India’s third lunar mission, do you ask what exactly happened to Russia’s moon landing? In this article, I will compare the Luna-25 and Chandrayaan-3 concerning their purpose and objective.

The aircraft Luna-25 crashed into the moon! That shocked Russia along with the rest of the world, especially because it was burdened with the ambitions of Russia. With the response worldwide and how Russia reacts, the failure has been a severe blow to the country’s prestige.

Russia failed miserably with its first lunar mission in 47 years, especially with Luna-25 crashing on the moon’s surface. The hint of a challenge arose when the spacecraft faced issues entering a pre-landing orbit; however, it became a full-fledged disaster on 21 August 2023!

On the other hand, Chandrayaan-3 of India successfully made history for India. Read the rest of the article to learn about how Chandrayaan-3 was vastly different from Luna-25 concerning experiments, route and methodology.

Russia Crashed Its Lunar Mission: India’s Chandrayaan-3 Was Successful- Why?

Russia Crashed Its Lunar Mission_ India's Chandrayaan-3 Was Successful- Why_

In 47 years, Russia has not been able to commit to a successful moon landing, and Luna-25 is another example! Luna-25 was launched on 10 August 2023 and was reported to land on 21 August 2023 on the moon’s south pole!

Unfortunately, on 21 August, the head of Russia’s space agency informed that there were issues of engine failure leading to the spacecraft crashing on the moon on 19 August. The spacecraft has no pilot! The moon landing date of Russia was 21 August!

The target was to land on the South Pole as scientists had long believed there might be precious elements and frozen water on the moon. Unfortunately, the spacecraft’s engines were turned on so that it would get into pre-landing orbit; however, it did not shut down properly.

Lunar Missions On A High…

Lunar Missions On A High…

Russia was a part of the Soviet Union when the country started its first lunar mission in 1976. With the successful Chandrayaan-3 lunar mission, India became a significant part of the top elite club of nations that landed on the moon, such as the United States, China and the Soviet Union.

When Russia announced its Luna-25 project, there was clear competition with the Indian lunar project, which launched on 14 July 2023. Luna 25 was launched almost a month later, on 10 August 2023.

Even Russia was trying to land on the moon’s south pole to study particulate matter and plasma. Unfortunately, it was a failure! Chandrayaan-3 was, on the other hand, a success! Let’s read why!

Comparing Luna-25 And Chandrayaan-3: Methodology!

Comparing Luna-25 And Chandrayaan-3_ Methodology!

The two lunar missions by Russia and India are severely different based on the route of the spacecraft, the experiments that will be conducted and their methodology. Chandrayaan-3 took a 40-day journey, while Luna-25 took 13 days. However, the mission still needs to be completed.

Chandrayaan-3 was a success regarding objectives as India Research Space Center informs that Vikram Lander has completed the “hop experiment” and the goals. The achievement of performing future sample returns by the lander makes it possible for future human missions.

The Chandrayaan-3 mission took 40 days compared to Luna-25, which took about 10 days before it crashed! The reason Luna-25 took less time to reach the moon as compared to India is that it was dependent on a high-powered rocket.

Both missions were created to land on the moon; however, their methodology was different because Chandrayaan was dependent on the gravitational forces of the moon and the Earth. Chandrayaan-3 needed external help from gravitational forces, while Luna-25 was completely independent.

More Money Does Not Always Means Better!

More Money Does Not Always Means Better!

The Luna-25 had Soyuz 2.1, one of the most powerful rockets, while the Chandrayaan-3 was dependent on the Earth’s orbit and the manipulation it does to send the spacecraft into the moon’s surface. Luna-25 was thrust based on its internal operations and technology!

Yet, Luna-25 turned out to be a failure. With cost-effective measures, ISRO proved that Chandrayaan 3 was a successful mission with end-to-end capability of soft landing and safe roving across the lunar surface.

Instead, the Russians’ mission seemed rushed, and they addressed the spacecraft issues with more money! Increased expenses are not always the answer to success, and Russia’s Luna-25 proves that.

With the success of Chandrayaan-3 by ISRO launch, it is clear that Vikram Lander has become a pride of the nation. India is now focused on using all the data the rover collects from the moon landing! I agree that the rover has a small mission life; however, it is a lot compared to Earth’s 24 hours.

With this feat, India has become the first country to soft-land on the moon, beating Russia even when Russia’s Luna 25 was supposed to land two days earlier than ISRO’s Chandrayaan-3! Russia clearly got rubbed the wrong way this time.

Luna-25: An Incompetence On Russia’s Part!

Luna-25_ An Incompetence On Russia's Part!

What trouble lay ahead of the Luna-25 spacecraft that it crashed instead of making a soft landing? The spacecraft’s engine turned on during the weekend, was not shut down properly, leading to the lander crashing into the moon. The plan for the appropriate landing was 84 seconds!

Unfortunately, the engine went on for 127 seconds! The Roscosmos Director General Yury Borisov informed this about the spacecraft’s engines. The spacecraft was in contact with the space research center till 2:57 p.m. on Saturday.

This is where Chandrayan did perfectly well, especially when the spacecraft of Chandrayaan-3 and Luna-25 were on autopilot. The accident with Luna-25 is very similar to Chandrayaan-2 as the Vikram lander tilted 410 degrees!

It was supposed to tilt only 55 degrees to correctly soft land! In Chandrayaan-3, the Vikram lander performed a hop experiment on its own with appropriate execution of soft landing from 30 to 40 cm away.

Finishing Up…

The moon landing was successful for one nation while taking down another nation’s prestige. As we compared the lunar missions of Russia and India, it was clear that the launch of Luna-25 was more challenging than Chandrayaan 3!

When you read this article, you realize how India, an economically developing country, stands tall against all big-shots, such as China or the Soviet Union, creating their own success story of a lunar mission.

Comment below regarding your perspective on why Chandrayaan-3 has a lower economic budget compared to Luna-25!

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sagnika sinha
Sagnika Sinha is a content writer who is passionate about writing travel vlogs, entertainment and celebrity articles and literature-based pieces. With a 4 years experience in teaching, she loves reading books. A procrastinator by nature, she loves travelling, listening to music, planting and gardening.

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