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Jun 17, 2023

CTTC played a major role in delivering over 75,000 components for Chandrayaan-3 and has now started supplying critical components for Gaganyaan, India’s first crewed orbital spacecraft.

Published: 24th August 2023 09:32 AM | Last Updated: 24th August 2023 09:32 AM | A+A A-

CTTC general manager L Rajasekhar with his staff celebrating landing of Chandrayaan-3 on moon surface, at the centre’s office in Bhubaneswar. (Photo | Shamim Qureshy, EPS)

BHUBANESWAR: Emotions ran high at the city-based Central Tool Room and Training Centre (CTTC) as the lander made a soft landing near the south pole of the Moon in a copybook manner at 6:04 pm on Wednesday. A team of 150 scientists, engineers and technicians, who toiled hard for the last two years to mould different types of components used in the lander, erupted in joy when lander module Vikram landed on the dark side of the Moon’s surface. It was the lander that had crashed during the Chandrayaan-2 mission in 2019. CTTC delivered over 75,000 components for Chandrayaan-3.

CTTC general manager and centre head L Rajasekhar said the successful landing was a momentous occasion and a proud moment for team CTTC.

“We were involved in manufacturing crucial components used in the lander. ISRO had given us the mandate and we proved it. All systems functioned as expected. Now the focus is on the rover and other systems that will start functioning shortly to collect information on the conditions of the Moon's surface,” he said.

Several structural and technological changes were made to the lander for the third lunar mission to ensure its soft landing. Modifications were done in its landing mechanism, solar array system and sensor elements, which were supplied by the CTTC.

Unlike the previous lander, which had two solar array drives, the Chandrayaan-3 lander has four solar array drive assemblies to help solar panels function better. Apart from the overhauling of the landing mechanism, more sensors were added to the lander to increase its efficiency in signalling.

“Based on the learnings from the Chandrayaan-2 mission, a lot of rectifications and technological modifications have been made to the lander this time. Some of the links and components of the wheel mechanism of the lander were manufactured here. The challenges faced during the second mission were properly taken care of. The lander will now work more effectively and efficiently,” said chief of quality control at CTTC Sachi Kanta Kar.

Most importantly, Kar said, the Chandrayaan-2 orbiter, which has been in lunar orbit, has established a connection with the Chandrayaan-3 lander with the rover in its belly. As the lander approached the Moon's surface, the orbiter became active and provided the required information and guided the team for the successful soft landing, he said.

The centre has supplied several critical components used in the launch vehicle Mark III (LVM3), spacecraft and rover. Besides, high-quality components including rate gyro electronic package device, mechanical dynamic tuned gyros, internal navigation systems and temperature sensors worth over Rs 12 crore have been supplied to ISRO for Chandrayaan-3.

Its advanced manufacturing unit coupled with its skilled workforce and cutting-edge infrastructure enabled the successful production of these components. CTTC’s collaboration with ISRO extends beyond the Chandrayaan-3 project. It has worked closely with ISRO, contributing to India’s space exploration endeavours for last more than two decades.

Meanwhile, the CTTC has started supplying critical components for Gaganyaan, India’s first crewed orbital spacecraft, which is aiming for a 2025 launch. Already 80 per cent of the components have been supplied and the remaining 20 per cent will be delivered soon, Rajasekhar added.

Part of history

Part of history