Exploring the Far Side of the Moon | God's World News
Exploring the Far Side of the Moon
News Shorts
Posted: June 03, 2024
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    People work at the Beijing Aerospace Control Center in Beijing, China, on June 2, 2024. A Chinese spacecraft landed on the far side of the Moon Sunday to collect soil and rock samples. (Jin Liwang/Xinhua via AP)
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    China’s lunar lander from the Chang’e-4 probe. This lander was used two missions ago. (China National Space Administration/Xinhua News Agency via AP)
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A Chinese spacecraft landed on the far side of the Moon on Sunday. It will collect soil and rock samples. Those could help scientists learn about the less-explored part of the Moon.

The landing module touched down in a large crater called the South Pole-Aitken Basin. The lander will use a mechanical arm and a drill. It will gather up to four and a half pounds of surface and underground material (like soil and rocks) over about two days.

An ascender atop the lander will take the samples to another module orbiting the Moon. Then the container will go to a reentry capsule. The capsule is due to return to Earth around June 25. It will land in the desert of China’s Inner Mongolia region.

China’s Moon exploration program is called the Chang’e project. This mission is the sixth in the program. The Chang’e 5 mission collected Moon samples from the near side in 2020.

Missions to the Moon’s far side are more difficult because it doesn’t face the Earth. Communications with space craft take longer. The terrain is more rugged. There are fewer flat areas to land.

The South Pole-Aitken Basin is HUGE. The crater is around 1,500 miles wide. A Chinese news agency says that the big hit to the Moon that created the basin may have brought up materials from deep below the surface.

China has big goals. It wants to put a human on the Moon before 2030. That would make it the second nation after the United States to land a person. China also put its own space station into orbit. It regularly sends crews there.

America is also planning to send people to the Moon again soon—for the first time in more than 50 years. Currently, NASA says astronauts will arrive by 2026.

May they fear you while the Sun endures, and as long as the Moon, throughout all generations! — Psalm 72:5