India's moon rover did 'Michael Jackson act' on the moon: it moon walked!

The logo of ISRO and India's national emblem have been engraved on the wheels of the rover to leave an imprint when it moves around.

India's Pragyan rover is exploring the surface of the moon's south pole as part of the Chandrayaan-3 mission (photo: ISRO)
India's Pragyan rover is exploring the surface of the moon's south pole as part of the Chandrayaan-3 mission (photo: ISRO)
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IANS

India's moon rover Pragya did a 'Michael Jackson act' on the lunar surface after walking down the ramp!

At any rate, it moon walked after slowly rolling down the moon lander's ramp, said the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO), the country's premier space agency.

The moon walk is a dance move that became hugely popular worldwide after Michael Jackson first performed it for the music video of his smash hit song Bille Jean, the second single from his album Thriller (1982).

The Vikram lander — part of the Chandrayaan-3 spacecraft — landed safely near the moon’s south pole on Wednesday in textbook style.

In a post on X (formerly Twitter) on Thursday, ISRO said: "Chandrayaan-3 ROVER: Made in India Made for the MOON! The Ch-3 Rover ramped down from the Lander and India took a walk on the moon!"

While the rover did its moon walk on Thursday, ISRO released the much awaited video on Friday.

In the video, taken by the camera on the lander — making it India's first lunar selfie — the rover with its solar panel deployed can be seen slowly going down the ramp, touching lunar soil, and moving forward.

One can also see the rover's wheel imprints on the soil, as well as the shadow of the rover with its solar panel.

ISRO posted: "Lander Module payloads ILSA, RAMBHA and ChaSTE are turned ON today (Thursday). Rover mobility operations have commenced. All activities are on schedule. All systems are normal."

According to the space agency, on Sunday, the propulsion module payload SHAPE was turned on.

The Chandrayaan-3 spacecraft comprises a propulsion module (weighing 2,148 kg), a lander (1,723.89 kg) and a rover (26 kg).

With the landing, a major portion of the Rs 600 crore Chandrayaan-3 mission has been realised.

The remaining portion is the moon rover rolling down from the lander, moving around and doing the programmed experiments.


According to ISRO, the moon rover has Alpha Particle X-ray Spectrometer (APXS) and Laser Induced Breakdown Spectroscope (LIBS) for deriving the elemental composition in the vicinity of the landing site.

The mission life of the lander and the rover is one lunar day or 14 earth days, ISRO said.

"The rover rolled down to the moon's surface from the lander sometime around 12.30 a.m. Thursday. It is moving around. It is leaving its imprint on the moon's surface," Dr S. Unnikrishnan Nair, director, Vikram Sarabhai Space Centre, told IANS.

The logo of ISRO and India's national emblem have been engraved on the wheels of the rover to leave an imprint when it moves around.

Unnikrishnan said the rover will collect samples from the moon and send the data to the lander.

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Published: 25 Aug 2023, 4:22 PM
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