The Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO) released a graph on Sunday showing temperature variations on the lunar surface with an increase in depth measured by the CHASTE-2 payload on the Vikram lander module of Chandrayaan-3.
According to the space agency, the Lunar Surface Thermo-Physical Experiment measured the thermal behavior of the Moon’s surface by profiling the upper soil temperatures of the lunar nearside around the southern pole.
“Here’s the first look at the CHASTE-2 payload on Vikram lander. To understand the thermal behavior of the lunar surface, CHASTE-2 profiles the upper soil temperatures of the lunar nearside around the southern pole,” ISRO said in an update on Twitter.
The payload includes a temperature probe that is equipped with a controlled entry mechanism capable of reaching depths of up to 10 cm below the surface.
“The probe has 10 individual temperature sensors. The presented graph shows the variation in temperature on the lunar surface/subsurface at different depths as observed during the probe’s descent. This is the first such profile for the lunar southern pole. Detailed analysis is ongoing,” it said.
The CHASTE-2 payload was created through collaborative efforts between the Space Physics Laboratory (SPL) at ISRO’s Vikram Sarabhai Space Centre (VSSC) and received backing from the Physical Research Laboratory (PRL) in Ahmedabad.
India created a historic moment on Wednesday, becoming the fourth nation to successfully accomplish a gentle touchdown on the lunar surface using the Chandrayaan-3’s landing module (LM). This achievement not only marks India as the fourth country to achieve such a feat but also positions it as the pioneer in reaching the uncharted southern pole of Earth’s sole natural satellite.