A Chinese spacecraft set sail for the moon on Tuesday to bring pebbles after four decades. This is seen as a milestone in Beijing's space ambitions. The news agency AFP reported this information.
China has poured billions of dollars into its military-led space program. The country is moving towards building a space station by 2022. They also have the goal of sending people to the moon.
The goal of the Chinese lunar mission is to collect pebbles and soil from there, which will help scientists learn about the source, structure, and volcanic state of the moon.
As seen in the video broadcast on Chinese state television, a rocket carrying the Chang Y-5 spacecraft launched at night. It is named after the moon goddess in Chinese mythology.
The eight-ton spacecraft started its journey from the Wencheng Space Center in Hainan Province, China at 4.30 AM.
The main mission was planned in 2016. However, the wait continues to increase due to problems with the engine of the Long March-5 rocket.
If China succeeds in the expedition, it will be added to the list of the third country in the world to collect samples from the moon. Earlier, only the United States and the Soviet Union were able to do so in the 1970s and 1980s.
According to NASA, the Chinese spacecraft will collect two kilograms of samples from an area called the Ocean of Storm. Samples have never been collected from there before. The place is a huge lava plain area. The spacecraft will land on the moon in late November and stay there for one day of the moon (equivalent to 14 days on Earth). It will then be brought back to Earth in a capsule in December.
© 2020 Sarah Adams