|Society for Popular Astronomy
|Chang'e 4 to the lunar farside
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|Author:||brian livesey [ Fri Dec 07, 2018 10:28 am ]|
|Post subject:||Chang'e 4 to the lunar farside|
Tomorrow morning ( Chinese time ), a Long March 3B rocket is scheduled to launch lunar rover, Chang'e 4, together with a small communications satellite to the lunar farside. The mission is ambitous by any standards.
The lunar rover will have to land autonomously in the large South Polar crater Von Karman. The orbiting satellite will communicate between the rover and ground stations on Earth. If all goes according to plan, the rover will land on site in the early New Year.
Experiments will include using ground-penetrating radar to search for minerals and water, and an horticultural experiment to see if potato and thale-cress seeds can sprout and flourish in low gravity and without the shielding protection of a thick atmosphere and magnetic field.
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