Indian moon mission's landing module separates from orbiter
India's space agency says the landing module of the country's unmanned moon mission has separated from the orbiter ahead of its planned touchdown on the moon's south polar region this weekend.
The Indian Space Research Organization says all the systems of orbiter and the lander are "healthy."
Monday's maneuver removed the lander from the orbiter's top, where it had been sitting since the mission took off on July 22.
The module will attempt India's first moon landing on a relatively flat surface on Saturday to study previously discovered water deposits. The roughly $140 million mission is known as Chandrayaan-2, the Sanskrit word for "moon craft."
Chandrayaan-1 orbited the moon in 2008 and helped confirm the presence of water.
India plans to send humans into space by 2022.
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