China makes history by landing on the far side of the Moon

15 2016 the supermoon rises over a logo for AVIC or Aviation Industry Corp a state owned enterprise involved in China's manned space mission in Beijing. China vowed Tuesday Dec 27 2016 to speed up the developme

Chang'e 4 spacecraft lands on far side of the Moon in world first for China

"The process was recorded by the camera on the lander and the images were sent back to the Earth via the relay satellite "Queqiao"," the report said, quoting China National Space Administration (CNSA). The 140kg rover will collect high-resolution images, and Chinese scientists designed it to study the lunar surface and area just beneath the surface, as well as the radiation environment on the far side of the Moon.

At 10.26am Beijing time (2.26am GMT), the Chang'e-4 probe touched down in the South Pole-Aitken Basin, Chinese state media said.

Chang'e-3, consisting of China's first moon rover Yutu and a lander, was launched in 2013.

Chang'e 4 will make astronomical observations and examine the structure and mineral composition of the ground above and below the surface.

One of several lunar experiments as photographed from Chang'e-4. And what exactly is the "far side of the Moon", anyway?

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The unmanned Chang'e-4 probe touched down yesterday in the deepest, oldest crater of the lunar surface - a landscape that always faces away from Earth and has been virtually untouched for billions of years.

The spacecraft, which blasted off into the heavens on December 7, was in an elliptical orbit around the Moon, swinging within 15 kilometres (nine miles) of the lunar regolith. According to the state news source Xinhua, the Chang'e-4 successfully landed on the Von Karman crater.

"Building a space power is a dream that we persistently pursue", said Wu Weiren, the chief designer of the China Lunar Exploration Project, speaking with CCTV at the Beijing Aerospace Flight and Control Center.

In 2003, China became the third country to put a man in space with its own rocket after the former Soviet Union and the United States, and in 2017 it said it was preparing to send a person to the moon. The 2011 Wolf Amendment to NASA's appropriation bill effectively bars the US space agency from collaborating with China. China launched a radio-relay satellite to orbit the moon prior to Chang'e 4's mission to enable the spacecraft to communicate with the earth. This is in the mid-southern latitudes of the Moon on its far side; it should offer important scientific information about Earth and the early Solar System.

China's space community is taking pride in the successful landing, which posed technical challenges because the moon blocks direct communication between the spacecraft and its controllers on Earth. Its plans include establishing a permanent manned space station, a manned lunar landing, and eventually probes to Mars.

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