China broadcasts spacecraft pictures from moon's far side

11 Janvier, 2019, 13:36 | Auteur: Therese Cote
  • A SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket launches carrying a Qatari communications satellite which will provide connectivity to Qatar and neighbouring parts of the Middle East North Africa and Europe from historic Launch Pad 39A at the Kennedy Space Center in Cape Ca

China on Friday broadcast pictures taken by its rover and lander on the moon's far side, in what its space program hailed as another triumph for the groundbreaking mission to the less-understood sector of the lunar surface.

It is the first time a soft landing has been performed on the Moon's far side - also known as the dark side because it faces away from Earth and remains comparatively unknown - due to challenges relaying signals.

11, 2019 releases the 360-degree panoramic photos taken by a camera installed on China's Chang'e-4 lunar probe (cylindrical projection).

A rover dubbed Yutu-2 - the name of the moon goddess's pet, the "Jade Rabbit" - successfully separated from the lander and drove onto the moon's surface yesterday. Officials with the China National Space Administration said they mark a "total success" for the mission in showing the rover moving away from its lander.

Equipped with instruments developed by scientists from Sweden, Germany and, of course, China, the Chang'e-4 probe is set to study the lunar environment, cosmic radiation and interaction between solar wind and the moon's surface, Xinhua reported.

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The images were sent back via the relay satellite Queqiao, which was operating around the second Lagrangian point of the earth-moon system, about 455,000 km from the earth, where it can see both the earth and the moon's far side.

The 140kg rover resumed activities yesterday after being on "stand-by mode" for five days.

Chang'e 4 touched down on the Von Karman Crater in the South Pole-Aitken Basin in the morning of January 3.

The message, a reference to a past Chinese office tradition, was quickly met with joy as several netizens wished the rover luck on it endeavors on the far side of the moon.

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