Chinese City Wants to Launch Artificial Moon

Mindy Sparks
October 22, 2018

Instead, the satellite will shine about eight times brighter than our natural satellite. The project is expected to help reduce energy consumption in the city of Chengdu, saving an estimated 1.2 billion yuan ($170 million) a year in electricity costs.

Scientists warned the device could disturb wildlife and disrupt systems that observe the earth's atmosphere.

Moonlight might be romantic, but it's really not all that useful.

This isn't the first time researchers have tried to illuminate the skies with artificial rays. Chengdu's counterfeit moon venture was declared by Wu at an innovation and entrepreneurship conference in Chengdu on October 10.

China plans to launch an artificial moon into space by 2020 bright enough to replace streetlights the south-western city of Chengdu, the China Daily reported on Thursday. According to the scientist, such brightness would be achieved due to the fact that the satellite is going to be placed in orbit at about 500 kilometers from the earth's surface, while the Moon is at a distance of 384 thousand kilometers from Earth.

Engineers in Chengdu are preparing "illumination satellites" to be launched into orbit, noted state-run media outlet People's Daily on Friday. The institute working on the satellite plans to have the fake moon deployed by 2020.

The main driver of this project appears to be cash.

Chinese officials and the European Space Agency opened talks previous year regarding the of a possible moon base, while the country also plans to land their own vehicle on Mars by 2020.

Not every city in China can be as bright as Beijing. However, according to Kang Weimin of the Harbin Institute of Technology, the moon's light would simply complement that of the real Moon, creating nothing more than a "dusk-like glow".

It is also unknown if the project has secured official support from the city of Chengdu or the federal government, The Guardian reported. And the country plans in the coming years to double the number of launches conducted last year.

While China's space program is close to that of the United States and Russian Federation, a series of ambitious projects are underway, including the Chang'e-4 moon probe - named after the goddess of the moon in Chinese mythology - later in this year. The mirror, called Znamya 2, got stuck and failed to open fully.

Other reports by Iphone Fresh

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