China’s moon rover prepares for a rough ride on the dark side

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China’s moon rover prepares for a rough ride on the dark side

This picture released by the China National Space Administration (CNSA) via CNS shows a 360 degree panoramic image made by China's Chang'e-4 lunar probe on the far side of the moon.

Because the far side faces away from Earth, it is also shielded from radio transmissions - making it the ideal place from where to study the universe.

CNSA also shared some intriguing panorama images from the crater, including a ring panorama centered around the lander.

Increasing China's morale to become the space superpower, Chang'an-4 landed in the distant part of the Moon on January 3 and became the world's first spacecraft to reach the never-seen part of the natural satellite.

"The scientific instruments aboard the probe worked well, and the images taken by the probe and the detection data have been sent back to ground control".

The original Yutu rover from the 2013 Chang'e-3 mission to the lunar near side also took a similar break during its first lunar day in Mare Imbrium.

The lunar probe last week transmitted early images of its exploration on the far side, and the Chinese National Space Administration (CNSA) has now released the first panoramic shot of its landing site.

The panorama taken from the Chang'e 4 lander at its perch in Von Karman Crater and stitched together as a full-circle view. In a press release, CNSA said their Chang'e 4 mission was a success, and thanked "significant worldwide cooperation", for their major space milestone.

Chinese media revealed that the Yutu took a "nap" after solar radiation raised the temperature on the lunar surface to more than 100 degrees Celsius (212 Fahrenheit) before it rebooted itself on Thursday when the dark side's surface cooled after sunset.

Li said that one of the craters close to the rover Yutu-2 has a diameter of about 20 meters and a depth of about 4 meters.

He said the Chang'e-4 landed at an altitude of almost minus 6,000 metres.

The deepest region on the moon, with a depth of 9,100 meters (5.7 miles), is about 700 kilometers (435 miles) to the south of the probe, Li said. Because of a phenomenon called "tidal locking", we see only one face of the Moon from Earth.

The video, lasting about 12 minutes, shows the probe adjusted its altitude, hovered and avoided obstacles during the descent process.

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