China's Change 4 Successfully Lands On Moon's Farther Side

Mindy Sparks
January 8, 2019

"On the whole, China's space technology still lags behind the West, but with the landing on the far side of the Moon, we have raced to the front", Hou Xiyun, a professor at Nanjing University's school of astronomy and space science, said.

While this is by no means the first time living organisms have been launched into space (see Ham and Enos the chimpanzees, the two tortoises that circled the moon and the Apollo moon missions for reference), this is the first time plants and animals have landed on the far side of the moon.

The hidden face of the Moon is revealed.

Xie added that the idea behind the study, which is a partnership between 23 Chinese universities, is to learn more about seed respiration and photosynthesis on the moon. This Thursday, 3 January, the Chinese Space Agency announced the successful landing of its probe Chang'e-4. Change 4 has also disbursed images taken with a topographical camera.

The maximum distance between the satellite and the Chang'e 4 probe on the far side of the moon is 79,000 km. Meanwhile, the U.S., threatened by China's incursions into space, is planning a buildup of its military there - the - and forbids NASA from collaborating with China. And yet: unlike the Moon's visible side, the hidden part is mountainous and covered in craters. Shortly after he took office in 2013, praised by the heads of state and party leader, the achievements of the Chinese space as proof that he proclaimed the "Chinese dream" is achievable. But whether the flowering plant will flourish in the environment of the far side of the moon remains an open question. Since it was not directed toward the Earth, the probe could not transmit its signals to the Earth because the radio waves were blocked by the Moon's rocky mass.

In May, China launched Queqiao, a satellite that will help relay the rover's communication.

Another challenge: surviving a hostile environment. And till last week, all lunar missions would descend on the same realm. "We will use a tube to direct the natural light on the surface of Moon into the tin to make the plants grow". And in doing so, we can say that today's event is particularly important and symbolic, ' Wu Weiren, chief engineer, said of the Chinese lunar exploration program.

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