Friday, 22 March, 2019

China broadcasts spacecraft pictures from moon's far side

China's lunar rover Yutu-2 or Jade Rabbit 2 rolling onto the far side of the moon taken by the Chang'e-4 lunar probe is seen in this image provided by China National Space Administrati Move The Muscles Bones: China's Jade Rabbit-2 Rover ‘Wakes Up From Nap REUTERS China National Space Administration
Doris Mccormick | 13 January, 2019, 14:46

Pics and vid China's Chang'e lunar lander has beamed back its first pictures of the far side of the Moon. From this photo, researchers were able to analyze the lunar surface topography of the far side of the moon.

The Moon's far side is also known as the dark side because it faces away from Earth and remains comparatively unknown, with a different composition from sites on the near side, where previous missions have landed.

They show the Chang'e-4 probe and its cargo - a Jade Rabbit 2 rover - approaching, adjusting its trajectory and speed before finally landing on the moon on January 3.

China's National Space Administration (CNSA) has made public a batch of selected photos, inducing a 360-degree panorama taken by a camera installed atop the lander.

The rover, named after the moon goddess's pet rabbit, successfully separated from the lander and drove onto the moon's surface last Thursday.

Transmitted from a relay satellite to a control centre in Beijing, the pictures were first aired by state broadcaster CCTV.

China on Friday broadcast pictures taken by its rover and lander on the far side of the moon, in what its space programme hailed as another triumph for the groundbreaking mission.

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Unlike the near side of the moon that offers many flat areas to touch down on, the far side is mountainous and rugged.

China announced on Friday that the Chang'e-4 mission, was a "complete success".

"From the panorama, we can see the probe is surrounded by lots of small craters, which was really thrilling".

An image of the Yutu 2 rover taken by the Chang'e lander. The deepest region on the Moon, where there is an altitude of minus 9,100 meters, is about 700 kilometers to the south of the probe.

One of the biggest challenges for the mission is getting information back to Earth.

The Chinese space administration also released a 12-minute video of the spacecraft's landing, which can be seen below.

Now that Chang'e 4 snapped some footage, CNSA aims to conduct low-frequency radio astronomical observation, surveys of moon landforms, measure neutron radiation, and detect mineral composition.

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