Washington: India’s lunar mission Chandrayaan-3 holds immense potential for gathering critical data and will significantly contribute to the understanding of the Moon, a former top NASA official has said, describing India, US space partnership further moving to the Moon.

Chief Growth Officer of Redwire Space Mike Gold on Tuesday in an exclusive interview to ANI said the data will play a pivotal role in enhancing the ability to utilize resources resulting in establishing settlements on the lunar surface.

Mike Gold, a well-known name with the space fraternity is also considered the architect of Artemis Record, a set of agreements that lay out the plan and framework for the responsible exploration of the Moon. He was a former associate administrator for Space Policy and Partnerships at NASA.

“This (Chandrayaan-3) mission will gather invaluable data to help drive our understanding of the Moon, our ability to utilize resources and ultimately where we're going to establish settlements on the Moon. Whether the mission succeeds in landing or not, the mission itself, in my opinion, is an overall success..." Gold asserted.

Mike Gold said the mission will “move the collaboration forward to the Moon. Right now a lot of our collaboration with NASA and ISRO is focused on Earth, which is terrific, such as projects such as NISAR, where with India, we're going to have radar systems that will be able to study the Earth. And create a lot of vital data to tackle climate change and issues related to our change in climate, which is going to be so important for India, for the US and for the entire world.”

Gold further added that India has been leading the way, certainly from a government policy perspective. Commending Prime Minister in terms of enacting bold visions and programmes in a fashion that has been very affordable and India’s clarity on successfully leveraging its incredible human capital, he said.

Gold stressed on India having amazing amounts of human capital, of manufacturing capacity that when applied to commercial space could be transformative, not just for India, but for the entire commercial space sector.

Red-wire Corporation is an American aerospace manufacturer and space infrastructure technology company. The company's Chief Growth Officer on the Chandrayaan-3 Mission said: “We are entering into a new era, the Artemis era of exploration of the Moon where we're going not just once, not just twice but to establish a permanent presence on the Moon.”

According to ISRO, Chandrayaan-3 is all set to land on the Moon on Wednesday at around 18:04 hrs IST.

India will be the fourth country in the world to achieve this feat after the United States, Russia, and China, but India will be the only country in the world to land on the lunar south pole.

The live telecast of the landing operations will begin at 5:20 PM IST on Wednesday. Live actions of landing will be available on the ISRO website, its YouTube channel, Facebook, and public broadcaster DD National TV from 5:27 PM IST on Aug 23, 2023.

He said that with the Chandrayaan-3 as well as the signing of the Artemis, “we're seeing that partnership go beyond Earth's orbit to the surface of the Moon where the next era of both robotic and human space exploration is going to take place..."

Meanwhile, the members of the Indian diaspora performed a havan at a temple in Virginia, US for the successful landing of Chandrayaan-3 on the Moon.

A visitor at the temple in Virginia, Dr Madhu Rammoorthy on the Chandrayaan-3 Mission, said: “I've been personally working in the area of advanced materials that go into aerospace and defence for a very long time now. I own a company in Bangalore that makes a lot of components that go into defence. Now, it so happens, very coincidentally, that we also make a very high-strength fabric that is used to reinforce and make it stronger.”

“One such part is a rubber gasket that's reinforced using our material that actually, from what I understand, is part of the Chandrayaan mission. So we are equally invested in this. We're all keeping our fingers crossed. We're looking forward to tomorrow, and I'm really hoping that all goes well, and I'm sure it will..." he said.

Another devotee who participated in the ritual, Radhika Narayan, said she is very proud of India's accomplishment.

“We are watching eagerly every mission that they undertake. And I want to wish them the very best. And I'm sure there'll be many, many more such successful missions,” she said.

Earlier, former ISRO scientist YS Rajan shed light on the momentous progress of India's lunar endeavour and revealed that around 80 per cent of the modifications have been completed in Chandrayaan-3.

“About 80 per cent of changes are done (in Chandrayaan-3)...They incorporated many things into Chandrayaan-3,” he said.

He further said that the previous version solely relied on an altimeter to gauge landing height, the new iteration boasts the addition of a Doppler velocity meter.