On 21st March, it was reported that the lunar lander, deployed in December 2022 by ispace, a pioneering Japanese startup in lunar exploration, has successfully reached lunar orbit.
In a press release concerning the insertion into lunar orbit, ispace stated:
“The punctual launch of the lander into lunar orbit exemplifies ispace’s position as a service provider possessing the technical and operational competencies required to transport payloads to lunar orbit. We are confident in asserting this, and we consider this a crucial milestone in the development of a payload transport service, which is integral to ispace’s business model.”
Ispace has outlined 10 key milestones, spanning from the launch of the lunar lander to the moon landing and the attainment of a stable state post-landing. The latest announcement of success corresponds to the seventh milestone, Success7.
The forthcoming milestone, Success 8, entails the conclusion of all scheduled orbital control manoeuvres in lunar orbit prior to initiating the landing sequence. Upon verification of completion, a formal announcement is anticipated around the end of April 2023. Operations are progressing steadily towards the lunar landing, scheduled for late April.