“Unexplored!” –China Releases First Photos of Moon’s Far Side


China's Chang'e 4 Mission


Images transmitted from China’s Chang’e 4 Yuta rover shows the craggy and complex terrain of the lunar south pole region, posing a serious challenge for controllers in plotting the rover’s future explorations, the official Xinhua News Agency said. The Von Kármán crater landing spot in the Aitken Basin is the oldest, deepest, crater on the moon’s surface and the largest in the Solar System.

Included in the pictures is a 360-degree panorama stitched together from 80 photos taken by a camera on the lander after it released the rover onto the lunar surface, Xinhua said, citing Li Chunlai, deputy director of the National Astronomical Observatories of China and commander-in-chief of the ground application system of Chang’e 4.

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“The lander, its rover, and the relay satellite are all in a stable condition. They have reached the predetermined engineering goals, right now they are getting into the stage of scientific searches,” Zhang Kejian, director of the China National Space Administration, said before engineers at the Beijing center.


China's Chang'e 4 Rover

“Now I declare that the Chang’e 4 mission, as a part of the Chang’e Lunar Exploration Program, has been a success,” Zhang said.

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Pictures transmitted back show a rocky surface with the jagged edge of craters in the background, posing a challenge for controllers in plotting the rover’s future travels, the official Xinhua News Agency said.

View more Far Side pictures here…

The Daily Galaxy via Smithsonian Magazine and Associated Press


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