Monday, January 1, 2018

Soft Disclosure? - China set to visit the far side of the Moon

China is set to become the first country to land a probe on the Moon's far side. Image Credit: NASA

The ambitious mission, if successful, will achieve what no other country has ever managed to do.

There have been dozens of missions to the Moon over the years, but the far side, which is always facing away from the Earth, remains mostly unexplored.

Now in a renewed bid to become the first country ever to place a lander on the far side, China is aiming to launch two spacecraft later on this year - one with the lander itself and the other with a communications satellite that will relay signals to and from the Earth.

Known collectively as Chang'e 4 after the Chinese moon goddess, the mission represents something of a world first and will catapult China in to the history books as a global leader in lunar exploration.

If all goes to plan, the satellite portion of the mission will be launching in June.