Japanese manufacturer ispace announced Saturday that the Japanese lunar lander Hakuto-R, which is carrying the UAE-built Rashid rover to the moon, has “successfully completed all deep-space orbital control maneuvers prior to lunar orbital insertion (LOI)”.
Hakuto-R completed its fourth maneuver on Friday. “The lander is currently in a stable attitude on its orbit towards the moon. Final preparations are now underway for the first LOI maneuver, which means the lander will enter the lunar gravity zone and orbit the moon,” added ispace.
“Preparations for the first LOI maneuver are underway,” ispace noted, adding: “The next announcement is expected after the successful completion of the LOI maneuver, which means the lander will enter the lunar gravity zone and orbit the moon. “
Landing is the most critical part of the mission to the moon, and several previous missions have failed, including those in India and Israel.
Hakuto-R was successfully launched from Cape Canaveral on December 11, 2022, on a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket. It completed its first orbital control maneuver that same month, followed by a second orbital control maneuver in January. The lander also performed a successful maneuver last month.
The Rashid rover was the first lunar rover built by an Arab country. The UAE-built lunar rover, named after the late Sheikh Rashid bin Saeed Al Maktoum, the former ruler of Dubai, will study one lunar day around the moon, equivalent to 14.75 days on Earth.
The Rashid rover has four cameras, including a microscope camera and a thermal imaging camera, to study soil, dust, radioactive and electrical activity, and rocks on the lunar surface. It will conduct a large number of scientific experiments to measure the effectiveness of certain materials on the lunar surface, such as the adhesion efficiency of lunar wheels to the lunar surface, and explore the process of overcoming the natural obstacles of the moon.
The Rashid rover is expected to land on the lunar surface by the end of April this year.
Copyright © 2022 Khaleej Times. all rights reserved. Provided by SyndiGate Media Inc. (Syndigate.info).