China’s space program is beginning to show results. A Chinese spacecraft has infiltrated the moon’s orbit. The Chinese service module has been prepared to set the ground for a future mission that will bring rock samples from the moon.
After months of continuous testing, the Chinese space module was sent on the moon to gather information about lunar surface and then return them to Earth. This test spacecraft was launched on October 24th. After a few days, a capsule was ejected and parachutes its way back on Earth.
Chinese media reports show that the test module has penetrated moon’s orbit sometime around this week. The lunar orbit has an eight hour shift, which the spacecraft should cross. Carried by the orbit, the module has been as close as 125 miles away from the lunar surface. That is the closest it will ever reach whether the Chinese module stays in the orbit.
The Beijing Aerospace Control Center announced that the spacecraft will break once more into the moon’s atmosphere early today. After the third braking, the module will fly over the moon for 127 minutes. That will be the deepest the module will fly into the orbit.
Chinese reports described the module as having a camera on board. That camera is set to assist the specialists back on Earth with the landing of Chang’e 5. This future mission will be launched around 2017. It is also equipped with support systems which seem to operate perfectly.
The vice director of China’s State Administration of Science, Technology and Industry for National Defense stated that it was a premiere for the Chinese spacecraft to reach such a deep level into the moon’s orbit. The module reached the Earth-Moon Lagrangian position. It also achieved in accomplishing three complete circles around that point to expand probe.
Chang’e 5 represents the Chinese robotic mission to collect lunar rocks. While the module is collecting data about the possible landing spots, Chang’e 5 is due to land without any problems, then compile a considerable amount of lunar soil and rocks and make its way back on Earth.
The entire mission is already set to be reported by the director of research for the National Commission on Space, Leonard David. He has already published a book about missions to Mars. Moreover, he is considered a veteran in the space field journalism since he has been practicing this job for more than five decades.
Image Source: NationalGeographic