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October 2023

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Russia’s Luna-25 Mission Ends in Lunar Crash, India’s Chandrayaan-3 Takes the Lead

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Russia’s Luna-25 mission faced a disappointing conclusion as the spacecraft crashed onto the Moon’s surface, confirmed by the country’s space agency on Sunday.

This outcome marks the conclusion of its inaugural mission to the lunar expanse, nearly five decades after the former Soviet Union’s last lunar landing.

India’s Chandrayaan-3 now takes the lead in the race, positioned to become the first spacecraft to achieve a landing near the Moon’s southern pole. Both Luna-25 and Chandrayaan-3 were originally scheduled to touch down in the same region, with the Russian mission set for August 21, just two days ahead of the Indian counterpart.

However, Luna-25 encountered issues on Saturday while attempting to adjust its course for a pre-landing orbit. Roscosmos, the Russian space agency, declared an “emergency situation,” preventing the planned orbit reduction maneuver and leading to a loss of contact with the spacecraft. Efforts were underway to address the problem.

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In a regrettable update on Sunday afternoon, Roscosmos confirmed Luna-25’s crash landing on the lunar surface. This turn of events reshapes the lunar exploration landscape, propelling India’s Chandrayaan-3 into the spotlight as the frontrunner in the quest to explore the Moon’s uncharted territories.

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