An RSAA panel discussion with Dr. Rajeswari Pillai Rajagopalan, Michael Kugelman, Dr. Christopher Newman.
In August 2023, just three days after a failed Russian attempt to land on the surface of the Moon, India’s Chandrayaan-3 made history by being the first spacecraft to successfully touched down near the lunar south pole. Chandrayaan-3 is the third in a series of lunar exploration missions developed by the Indian Space Research Organisation aimed at conducting a safe and soft landing on the lunar surface, successfully roving on the Moon and conducting in-situ scientific experiments.
This remarkable technological achievement puts India ahead in a fierce Asian space race centred on its rival China, leaving the country’s space industry poised to reap significant economic benefits and placing it at a significant strategic advantage to assert control over valuable lunar resources. Earning India its place in the ranks of world space superpowers, this success has the potential to reshape the balance of power in space exploration and may have opened a Pandora’s box of geopolitical and astropolitical implications for the world.