Luna-25 vs Chandrayaan-3: A Lunar Race Comparison

Luna-25 vs Chandrayaan-3: A Lunar Race Comparison

Luna-25 vs Chandrayaan-3: In an exciting space showdown, Russia’s space agency Roscosmos has declared that their Luna-25 spacecraft is all set to touch down on the Moon on Monday, a whole two days before India’s Chandrayaan-3. Let’s take a look at what’s happening in this cosmic clash and understand the reasons behind the differing arrival times of these two lunar missions.

Blast-off and Path – Comparison of Luna-25 and Chandrayaan-3

  • While Chandrayaan-3 was sent off from India’s Satish Dhawan Space Centre on July 14.
  • Russia’s Luna-25 had a successful launch on August 10 from their Vostochny spaceport using the Soyuz 2.1v rocket.
  • Surprisingly, Luna-25 will finish its journey to the Moon in just 10 days, while Chandrayaan-3 took a longer 38 days.

Luna-25’s quicker arrival is thanks to its direct route to the Moon, unlike Chandrayaan-3 that relies on the gravitational pull of both the Earth and the Moon to navigate.

Adjustments and Getting Ready

On August 18, Luna-25 performed a quick orbit change as part of its preparations for the upcoming lunar landing. This maneuver, which lasted for about 40 seconds, was meant to ensure the best conditions for establishing the right orbit before landing. Roscosmos confirmed the success of this operation.


On the flip side, Chandrayaan-3’s Lander Module – which includes the Vikram lander and Pragyan rover – is getting ready for its second deboosting operation on August 20. Following the first deboosting on August 18, the lander is scheduled to softly land on the Moon’s surface on August 23, kicking off its 14 Earth Day-long scientific expedition.

Chandrayaan-3 Lander Module

Weight and Fuel Efficiency – Comparison of Luna-25 and Chandrayaan-3

One big reason for the time difference between Luna-25 and Chandrayaan-3 is their size and fuel efficiency. Luna-25 is much lighter, weighing only 1,750 kilograms, while Chandrayaan-3 is bulkier at 3,800 kg. This lighter weight helps Luna-25 accelerate better, as confirmed by India’s ISRO.

Landing Points and Goals – Comparison of Luna-25 and Chandrayaan-3

Both Luna-25 and Chandrayaan-3 are aiming for a historic landing near the Moon’s South Pole, exploring uncharted territory. Although both missions have similar targets, the exact landing sites aren’t right at the polar region. Chandrayaan-3 is heading for a site around 68 degrees South latitude, while Luna-25 is going closer to 70 degrees South.

Since these landing spots are quite far from each other on the Moon’s surface, the spacecraft will collect different types of soil samples. Luna-25’s main job is to examine the moon’s surface and its thin atmosphere for a whole year. Meanwhile, Chandrayaan-3 is carrying six gadgets to study the lunar soil and snap pictures of Earth from the Moon’s orbit.

Budget – Comparison of Luna-25 and Chandrayaan-3

Luna-25 vs Chandrayaan-3
Luna-25 vs Chandrayaan-3
  • Chandrayaan-3 is India’s third mission to the moon.
  • It marks Russia’s first moon landing since 1976.
  • The Russian spacecraft Luna-25 weighs 1,750 kilograms.
  • Chandrayaan-3 from India is heavier, weighing 3,800 kilograms.
  • There’s a significant difference in their budgets.
  • Chandrayaan-3’s budget is Rs 615 crore.
  • This budget is lower than the cost of Chandrayaan-2.
  • Russia hasn’t officially revealed Luna-25’s budget, but reports estimate it at around Rs 1,600 crore.
  • This makes Russia’s mission cost about two and a half times more than India’s.
  • Chandrayaan-3 is distinct as it lacks an orbiter, unlike Chandrayaan-2.

Luna-25 vs Chandrayaan-3

Launch DateAugust 10July 14
Arrival Time11 days38 days
TrajectoryDirect pathRelies on gravitational forces
Orbit AdjustmentYes (August 18)Yes (August 20)
Mass1,750 kg3,800 kg
Landing SiteNear Moon’s South PoleNear Moon’s South Pole
ObjectivesStudy surface, atmosphereStudy lunar soil, Earth images
Lunar ExplorationComposition, atmosphereSurface analysis, scientific research
Mission HistoryRussia’s first moon landing since 1976India’s third moon mission
BudgetEstimated around Rs 1,600 croreRs 615 crore (approx.)
OrbiterNo orbiterNo orbiter

The Impact of the Lunar Race Between Russia Luna-25 and India Chandrayaan-3

According to Chrisphin Karthick, a scientist at Bangalore’s Indian Institute of Astrophysics, the order of arrival might not change the Moon much, but the knowledge from both missions will really help us understand the Moon’s history better. The sum of these combined efforts will give us a clearer picture of the Moon’s composition, history, and its potential as a valuable resource.

Also Read: Chandrayaan-3 Live Updates: Stay Informed with the Latest News, Mission Milestones & More


As the world eagerly awaits the historic landings of Luna-25 and Chandrayaan-3, their different paths, missions, and technologies show the diversity in lunar exploration. Luna-25’s speedy journey shows off its capabilities, while Chandrayaan-3’s longer trip demonstrates its reliance on gravity. Together, these missions are expected to open up new horizons in our understanding of the Moon and set the stage for more space exploration in the future.


Why is Luna-25 reaching the Moon faster?

Luna-25 is taking a more direct path to the Moon, which makes its journey quicker and more efficient.

How is Chandrayaan-3 different from Luna-25?

Chandrayaan-3 is focusing on studying lunar soil and taking pictures of Earth, while Luna-25 is analyzing the Moon’s surface composition and atmosphere.

How do weight and fuel efficiency matter in these missions?

Luna-25’s lighter weight allows it to speed up better, resulting in a quicker journey compared to Chandrayaan-3.

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