Successful Landing of Chandrayaan-3’s Lunar Odyssey: The Brilliant Minds Behind the Achievement

Leading the charge for Chandrayaan-3 is ISRO Chairman S Somanath, a pivotal figure in the mission’s realization. Somanath’s distinguished tenure as Director of both the Vikram Sarabhai Space Centre and the Liquid Propulsion Systems Centre has been dedicated to advancing rocket technologies for ISRO. Alongside Chandrayaan-3, Somanath is also overseeing the progress of other significant missions such as Aditya-L1, aimed at the sun, and Gaganyaan, India’s inaugural human space expedition.

Assuming the role of Director for the Chandrayaan-3 project in 2019, P Veeramuthuvel previously served as Deputy Director at ISRO’s Space Infrastructure Programme Office. He played a crucial role in the Chandrayaan-2 mission, India’s second lunar endeavor, which encountered challenges resulting in a lunar surface crash landing. An alumnus of the Indian Institute of Technology, Madras, Veeramuthuvel contributed significantly to the project. Notably, the Geosynchronous Satellite Launch Vehicle (GSLV) Mark-III, renamed the Launch Vehicle Mark-III, was responsible for ferrying the Chandrayaan-3 spacecraft – housing the propulsion module, lander module, and enclosed rover. This impressive feat was realized under the guidance of S Unnikrishnan Nair, Chief of the Vikram Sarabhai Space Centre in Thumba, Kerala. Nair and his adept team shouldered various pivotal responsibilities for this critical mission.

M Sankaran, Director at the UR Rao Satellite Centre since June 2021, led the center’s efforts in constructing the Chandrayaan-3 spacecraft.

Amidst the challenges posed by the Covid pandemic, Associate Project Director Kalpana Kalahasti tenaciously guided the Chandrayaan-3 team. A devoted engineer dedicated to India’s satellite endeavors, she was also instrumental in the Chandrayaan-2 and Mangalyaan missions. A luminary not to be overlooked is M Srikanth, Mission Operations Director. With an illustrious career spanning over two decades at ISRO, Srikanth’s expertise encompasses a range of missions, including Chandrayaan-1 and Chandrayaan-The Chandrayaan-3 mission is yet another testament to his remarkable achievements.

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