Chinese Rover Lands on Dark Side of the Moon, First Photos Released

Chang'e 4 spacecraft lands on far side of the Moon in world first for China

Chang'e 4 spacecraft lands on far side of the Moon in world first for China

"This time the Chang'e-4 mission have a very good start".

Previous moon landings, including America's six manned missions from 1969 to 1972, have been on the near side of the moon, which faces Earth.

His team analyzed a huge amount of lunar remote sensing data from multiple sources and created high-precision and high-resolution topographic models of the northwestern South Pole-Aitken basin, where Chang'e-4 landed at noon on Thursday Beijing time.

At 100 meters above the surface, it hovered to identify smaller obstacles and measure the slopes on the lunar surface, Wu said. The United States is the only country to successfully send astronauts to the moon - 2019 will mark the 50th anniversary of the Apollo 11 lunar landing - although China is considering a crewed mission too.

A Chinese spacecraft has made the first-ever landing on the far side of the moon, state media said.

Rover designer Shen Zhenrong of the China Aerospace Science and Technology Corporation told state broadcaster CCTV that the "surface is soft and it is similar to that when you are walking on the snow", according to the Associated Press.

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Instruments on the lander and rover will study the mineral composition and shallow lunar surface structure of the area as well as perform low-frequency radio astronomical observation.

The moon's far side is sometimes known as the dark side, although it is not darker than the near side in any literal sense.

Chinese media and officials hailed the December 8 launch of Chang'e 4 as one of the nation's major achievements in 2018.

Chang'e-4 is carrying six experiments from China and four from overseas, including low-frequency radio astronomical studies - aiming to take advantage of the lack of interference on the moons' far side. Media outlet China Daily later confirmed the success of the mission when it announced on Twitter that, "China's Chang'e 4 landed on the moon's far side, inaugurating a new chapter in mankind's lunar exploration history". "We believe that it will be necessary and very meaningful to have samples back from the far side of the Moon", said Yang in an in interview with the China Global Television Network (CGTN).

The pioneering landing demonstrates China's growing ambitions as a space power.

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