The Chinese have sent to the moon potatoes

The Chinese have sent to the moon potatoes

The Chinese have sent to the moon potatoes

If the mission succeeds, it will catapult China into the forefront of lunar exploration with a landing that no other nation has even dared to attempt.

The mission will be supported by the Queqiao relay satellite, launched in May and placed in orbit beyond the Moon in June.

The craft, Chang'e 4, is named after the Chinese goddess of the moon; it features a lunar station and a lunar rover. Launched in may this year and it reached the Lagrange point on the opposite side of the moon.

To overcome that, a satellite was blasted into the moon's orbit in May, to act as a link between the lander and Earth.

It's also carrying a 3 kg (6.6 lb) container of seeds and silkworm larvae to study whether they can grow on the surface of the Moon - an experiment that could have long-term implications for a lunar colony.

If you're tempted to make a Pink Floyd joke, remember this: "The side of the Moon we do not see from Earth gets just as much sunlight on it as the side we do see".

China conducted its first crewed space mission in 2003, making it only the third country after Russian Federation and the do so.

Chang'e-2, launched in 2010, created a full lunar map with a resolution of 7 meters, as well as images of the Sinus Iridum, or the Bay of Rainbows, with a resolution of 1.5 meters, showing the details of the proposed landing site of Chang'e-3.

The objective of the mission is to deliver samples of lunar soil to Earth. It was then tasked to fly by and observe the Toutatis asteroid, about 7 million km from the earth, and continued its journey into deep space.

The launch of the spacecraft called Chang'e-4 was the next step China program. The spacecraft re-entered the earth's atmosphere at a speed of about 11.2 km per second.

Advancing China's space program has been a priority of its leaders, with President Xi Jinping calling for China to establish itself as a space power. Its program also suffered a rare setback previous year with the dialed launch of its Long March 5 rocket.

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