Chang’e successfully landed on the far side of the Moon to collect 6 samples

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Chang’e successfully landed on the far side of the Moon to collect 6 samples

The Chinese robotic spacecraft will collect rocks and dust from the surface and underground with the aim of bringing them back to Earth.

Robot Chang’e-6China successfully landed on the far side of the moon this morning to collect about two kilograms of lunar samples and bring them back to Earth. It is the second return function after Song 5 It will return in 2020 with 1.73 kg of material collected at its closest approach to the satellite. The Asian superpower has reached yet another milestone in its space race.

The robotic ship was launched by a rocket on May 3 Long March 5 It entered lunar orbit five days later. The lander separated from the orbiter this Sunday (early in the morning in Spain) and headed for direction. Cuenca Aitken From the South Pole, there Song 6 Landed in a large crater formed about 4,000 million years ago It is believed to contain ice water. There he spends the next three days drilling into the ground with a drill and collecting rocks and dust from the surface and underground with a shovel.

Due to difficulties in direct communication between Earth and the far side of the Moon, much of the landing process was done automatically, but Chinese engineers used instructions to communicate with the spacecraft. Sent via Queqiao-2, A communications satellite launched by China last March is now in lunar orbit.

In addition to the Chinese sample collection equipment, the lander also carries a number of international instruments: a lunar surface ion composition analyzer sent through; European Space Agency, A detector from France, the laser corner reflector Italy and A CubeSat (Nano Satellite) of Pakistan.

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“Our spacecraft depends on sunlight to generate power, and this light varies with latitude,” he explained. Lu Yundong, Engineer of China Institute of Aerospace Science and Technology, In an interview with government television The hidden “For this mission, we chose a landing site in a region with moderate latitude. We chose the Aitken Basin, which meets engineering standards due to sufficient sunlight and reliable communication signals,” he stressed.

“This mission is essential to human exploration of the origin and evolution of the Moon, planetary evolution, and the origin of the Solar System,” he added. Hu Zhenyu, chief engineer of China’s lunar exploration program. Wang Chi, The senior scientist running the project also stressed that the aim of the mission is to expand our knowledge of the Moon’s history.

Most of the rocks collected in the satellite’s close quarters so far are volcanic rocks that we can see in Iceland. “On board Song 6 “Essential instruments such as the panoramic camera and lunar radar help with sample collection and geological assessment,” Wang explained.

The plan is that once the materials are collected, they will be launched into lunar orbit using an ascent, which will carry out a precision mission. Docking and delivering cargo to lunar orbit. The samples will then be moved to the module’s re-entry capsule, which will be launched before the orbiter reaches Earth.

A parachute landing is expected on June 25 Interior Mongolia, North of the Asian country. Total round trip Chang’e-6 Total lasts 53 days, twice as much as its predecessor Chang’e-5. The recovered samples are transferred to the laboratory Beijing For your test. Later, researchers from other countries could also request access to study lunar rocks, as in the previous mission, Beijing distributed small amounts of samples to various companies.

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Scientists are confident that these models can Ice indicates how much water is trapped For future manned missions in the hidden part of the satellite. China announced last year that it plans to launch its first manned lunar mission before 2030.

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