China's lunar rover travels about 463 meters on moon's far side
China's lunar rover Yutu-2, or Jade Rabbit-2, has moved 463.26 meters on the far side of the moon to conduct scientific exploration of the virgin territory.
Both the lander and the rover of the Chang'e-4 probe have just ended their work for the 19th lunar day, and switched to the dormant mode for the lunar night due to lack of solar power, the Lunar Exploration and Space Program Center of the China National Space Administration said Sunday.
China's Chang'e-4 probe, launched on December 8, 2018, made its first-ever soft landing on the Von Karman Crater in the South Pole-Aitken Basin on the moon's far side on January 3, 2019.
As a result of the tidal locking effect, the moon's revolution cycle is the same as its rotation cycle, and the same side always faces the Earth. A lunar day equals 14 days on Earth, and a lunar night is the same length.
During the 19th lunar day, Yutu-2 examined a small crater about three meters southwest of the rover and obtained a new batch of scientific detection data.
Yutu-2 has worked much longer than its three-month design life, becoming the longest-working lunar rover on the moon.
The rover has helped scientists unveil the secrets buried deep under the surface on the far side of the moon, enriching humanity's understanding of the history of celestial collision and volcanic activities and shedding new light on the geological evolution on the moon.
The scientific tasks of the Chang'e-4 mission include conducting low-frequency radio astronomical observations, surveying the terrain and landforms, detecting the mineral composition and shallow lunar surface structure and measuring neutron radiation and neutral atoms.
The Chang'e-4 mission embodies China's hope to combine wisdom in space exploration with four payloads developed by the Netherlands, Germany, Sweden and Saudi Arabia.
China plans to launch its first Mars probe and the Chang'e-5 probe to bring lunar samples back to Earth later this year.