“Epic!” –WATCH: China’s Chang’e-4 Probe Lands on Moon’s Far Side

Moon Far Side NASA

 

The China National Space Administration (CNSA) landed the robotic probe Chang’e 4 in the unexplored South Pole-Aitken basin, the oldest, deepest, crater on the moon’s surface and the largest in the Solar System. The probe sent back world’s first close shot (below) of the lunar far side.

 

Chang’e 4 Moon Farside

 

Early reports unleashed confusion after state-run media China Daily and CGTN deleted tweets celebrating the mission. China Daily’s tweet said: ‘“China’s Chang’e 4 landed on the moon’s far side, inaugurating a new chapter in mankind’s lunar exploration history.”

 

Official confirmation came two hours later via state broadcaster CCTV, which said the lunar explorer had touched down at 10.26am (2.26am GMT). The state-owned Global Times announced that the probe had “successfully made the first-ever soft landing” on the far side of the moon.

 

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“This is a major achievement technically and symbolically,” said Namrata Goswami, an independent analyst who wrote about space for the Defense Department’s Minerva Research Institute. “China views this landing as just a steppingstone, as it also views its future manned lunar landing, since its long-term goal is to colonize the moon and use it as a vast supply of energy.”

 

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“This space mission shows that China has reached the advanced world-class level in deep space exploration,” said Zhu Menghua, a professor at the Macau University of Science and Technology who has worked closely with the Chinese space agency. “We Chinese people have done something that the Americans have not dared try.”

The DailyGalaxy via New York Times and Xinhua

Image credit top of page: NASA

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