That’s no moon, it’s a Chinese space light

18 Octobre, 2018, 15:21 | Auteur: Therese Cote
  • The artificial moon could be floating above China in 2020

A Chinese city has hatched a plan to launch an artificial moon into space within the next two years, according to a new report.

Chengdu, the capital of the Sichuan province, has proposed a plan to launch an artificial moon, or illumination satellite, into space, Asia Times is reporting. The fake moon will supposedly be able to light up an area up to about 50 miles in diameter, and also be remotely controllable for light precision.

It is not clear whether the plan has the backing of the city of Chengdu or the Chinese government, though Casc is the main contractor for the Chinese space programme. Wu said that his company has been working on developing and building an "artificial moon" for years and that the technology is now finally mature enough to shoot for a 2020 launch.

The newspaper credited a French artist for the idea of putting a manmade moon into orbit.

The articial light emitted would replace streetlights in the Chinese city of Chengdu
Camera Icon The articial light emitted would replace streetlights in the Chinese city

In 2013 three large computer-controlled mirrors were installed above the Norwegian town of Rjukan to track the movement of the sun and reflect its rays onto the town square.

With an ultra-bright full moon each and every night, the city would then be in for serious savings on their monthly electric bills, or at least that appears to be the rationale for the ambitious project. "Several" proved an overstatement, but the design was shown to be sound.

Concerns were expressed that having no proper night might affect animal life around the city, however, Kang Weimin, director of the Institute of Optics in the School of Aerospace at Harbin Institute of Technology in China, said the light levels shouldn't be enough to change the behavior of fauna.

But Znamya 2.5 misfired on launch and its creators failed to raise funding for another attempt. However, an expert told the People's Daily that the artificial moon's light shouldn't be so bright that it would impact them.

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