Chinese rover begins exploring far side of the moon

09 January, 2019, 12:09 | Author: Amos Gonzales
  • Yutu 2 leaving track marks as it begins to explore the surface of the far side of the moon

The Jade Rabbit 2 sent back a photo of the tracks it had left in the moon's soft, snow-like surface after a Chinese spacecraft successfully landed carrying the equipment.

"We hope Yutu-2 can make its exploration with no fear and have a more stable, wide and long journey", said the CNSA in a statement.

The relatively unexplored far side of the moon faces away from Earth and is also known as the dark side.

China's far-side moon rover is already busy exploring its exotic new home.

The Yutu-2 (Jade Rabbit-2) rover drove onto the moon's surface from the lander at 10:22pm Thursday (1422 GMT), about 12 hours after the groundbreaking touchdown of the Chang'e-4 probe, the agency said.

"The landing on the far side shows China's technology is powerful", said He Qisong, a space expert at the East China University of Science and Law in Shanghai.

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China's space agency says all systems are go for its spacecraft and rover that have made a pioneering landing on the far side of the moon. After receiving the order, Yutu-2, atop the spacecraft, extended its solar panel, stretched out its mast and started to drive slowly to the transfer mechanism, according to the Beijing Aerospace Control Center.

Lunar exploration chief Wu Weiren echoed Neil Armstrong's famous quote, telling state media the event marked a "huge stride" for China.

The first photos from the landing, shared by the China National Space Administration on Thursday, show the first close-ups of the far side of the moon's cratered surface.

Chang'e 4's images and data come home via a relay satellite called Queqiao, which is parked at a gravitationally stable spot beyond the moon.

The Yutu-2 rover has six wheels that all have power, so it can continue to operate even if one wheel fails.

These allegations have come up after recent analysis of pictures taken from the Chinese Chang'e-4 probe allegedly found no traces of the American Moon landings existing on the Moon. The other side, most of which can not be seen from the Earth, is called the far side or dark side because most of it is uncharted. The vehicle can slant up to 20 degrees and overcome obstacles up to 20 centimeters in size.

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