ISRO gets patent for its method to manufacture moon soil or lunar soil simulant. The patent is valid for 20-years from the date of filings. The simulant will be made from the rock samples found at the Sittampundi Anorthosite Complex, located at 67 km from Salem, in Tamil Nadu.
Its chemical composition, grain distribution size, and mineralogy all is similar to the rock at the lunar surface. The soil simulant will be used to create an artificial moon’s surface to prepare for Chnadryaan 3. It would also help scientists to improve the mobility of the rover on the lunar surface.
“Most future missions propose for a soft landing on the lunar highland region. Hence there is an urgent need for a bulk quantity of lunar soil simulants that represent the highland lunar crust,” ISRO said, in a patent specification. “The simulant is exclusively manufactured to represent the lunar highland region and should also be useable in diverse lunar applications to provide the lowest possible risk.”
Chandrayaan 3 will succeed in the Chandrayaan-2 that was launched last year. ISRO is planning to launch the mission by late 2020 or early 2021.