Updated: Jan 20, 2020
China landed a vehicle on Thursday, January 3, 2019 on the far side of the moon for the first time in space history. The rocket was launched in Xichang, China, southwest, on December 8. China is the First Nation to touch down on the side of the moon that faces away from the Earth, showing that it is quickly catching up for supremacy in artificial intelligence and other fields.
The probe is called Chang’e-4. The crater where the Chinese landed is the oldest and deepest on the moon. The main lander will release a 300-pound rover that will Roma that crater. This could give insights into the moon’s origins and evolution. There are cameras, ground-penetration radars and spectrometers on the rover. These materials could help us find out the composition of the area and figure out more about the moon’s geology.
Some suspect that the surrounding basin on the moon may be rich in minerals. Scientists might want to exploit the moon’s resources which to them, is the next step in space development. The lander will conduct an experiment to see if plant seeds will germinate, etc.
To get pictures and signals from the rover, China launched a satellite to act as a relay. It allows the rover to bounce signals off it first before they continue back to the scientists on Earth.
China is the third country to send its own astronauts into space aboard its rockets. The Tiangong-2 is their space station that’s in orbit. The landing of the vehicle on the farthest side of the moon is definitely a breakthrough and a “new chapter” in space exploration.