China's second lunar probe enters moon orbit: media

Oct 09, 2010
The launch pad at the Xichang Satellite Launch Center in Xichang, southwest China's Sichuan province. China's second lunar probe entered the moon's orbit, eight days after the Long March 3C rocket carrying the Chang'e-2 blasted off from the launch centre, state media reported.

China's second lunar probe entered the moon's orbit on Saturday, eight days after the Long March 3C rocket carrying the Chang'e-2 blasted off from the launch centre, state media reported.

The unmanned probe will start "scientific exploration activities soon," said the official Xinhua news agency, citing the Beijing Aerospace Control Center.

The Chang'e-2 will first circle the moon at a distance of 100 kilometres (62 miles). The plan is for it to drop into orbit 15 kilometres from the moon's surface.

It will conduct various tests over a six-month period in preparation for the expected launch in 2013 of the Chang'e-3, which China hopes will be its first unmanned landing on the moon.

The Chang'e programme, named after a mythical Chinese goddess who flew to the moon, is seen as an effort to put China's programme on a par with those of the United States and Russia.

The first , launched in October 2007, was in orbit for 16 months.

Beijing hopes to bring a sample back to in 2017, with a manned mission pencilled in for around 2020, according to state media.

Explore further: It's 'full spin ahead' for NASA soil moisture mapper

Related Stories

China preps next lunar space mission

Sep 10, 2010

China is on track to launch its second lunar satellite by year's end, as the country pursues its plans for a manned mission to the moon by 2020, state media said Friday.

China launches second lunar probe (Update 2)

Oct 01, 2010

China on Friday celebrated 61 years of communist rule with the launch of its second lunar probe -- the next step in its ambitious programme to become the second country to put a man on the moon.

Recommended for you

It's 'full spin ahead' for NASA soil moisture mapper

2 hours ago

The 20-foot (6-meter) "golden lasso" reflector antenna atop NASA's new Soil Moisture Active Passive (SMAP) observatory is now ready to wrangle up high-resolution global soil moisture data, following the successful ...

What drives the solar cycle?

2 hours ago

You can be thankful that we bask in the glow of a relatively placid star. Currently about halfway along its 10 billion year career on the Main Sequence, our sun fuses hydrogen into helium in a battle against ...

MESSENGER completes 4,000th orbit of Mercury

2 hours ago

On March 25, the MESSENGER spacecraft completed its 4,000th orbit of Mercury, and the lowest point in its orbit continues to move closer to the planet than ever before. The orbital phase of the MESSENGER ...

ESA recovers IXV spaceplane

2 hours ago

ESA's recovered IXV spaceplane arrived at the Port of Livorno in Italy yesterday and is set to be taken to Turin for final analysis.

User comments : 9

Adjust slider to filter visible comments by rank

Display comments: newest first

LariAnn
2.3 / 5 (3) Oct 09, 2010
At the rate China's Moon program is going, perhaps when tourists travel to the Moon for vacation in the future, they will have to learn Chinese in order to communicate with the staff there!
Sonhouse
not rated yet Oct 09, 2010
I wonder if that probe would be able to take pictures of the Apollo landing sites with enough resolution to image the footprints, which would lay to rest the moon landing deniers.
SteveL
not rated yet Oct 09, 2010
If they do, I would hope they would fence off and protect the area to show future humans that a once great civilization named "America" once landed there. At the rate NASA is going, our memories will be all we'll have left to comfort us in our decline.

I don't blame NASA, but I do blame the bozo's on the hill and in the Oral office who throw money at everything but a program that would provide vaulable, high quality engineering and scientific jobs, and hope for our species.
ShotmanMaslo
1 / 5 (1) Oct 09, 2010
I wonder if that probe would be able to take pictures of the Apollo landing sites with enough resolution to image the footprints, which would lay to rest the moon landing deniers.


They would just claim it was photoshopped anyway..
Quantum_Conundrum
1 / 5 (1) Oct 09, 2010
Sonhouse:

The rovers, flag, descent stage of the each of 6 landing modules, and are few other scientific instruments are still there. Photos of these should convince even the biggest skeptic.
plasticpower
5 / 5 (3) Oct 09, 2010
Didn't the Indian moon orbiter take photos of this already? I don't understand why people still think it's a conspiracy. THE US LANDED ON THE MOON. Why would the Soviets broadcast it on national TV if THEY didn't believe it? I'm Russian, and I believe the US landed on the moon.
frajo
5 / 5 (2) Oct 09, 2010
At the rate China's Moon program is going, perhaps when tourists travel to the Moon for vacation in the future, they will have to learn Chinese in order to communicate with the staff there!
Which of the 13 mutually unintelligible sub-languages of Chinese do you propose to learn?
_ilbud
not rated yet Oct 10, 2010
Mandarin would be best but google.lun would be able to provide realtime translation. I believe trepanning works fine on the moon hoax goons.
Skeptic_Heretic
4 / 5 (4) Oct 10, 2010
I wonder if that probe would be able to take pictures of the Apollo landing sites with enough resolution to image the footprints, which would lay to rest the moon landing deniers.

It appears that nothing will stop the moon landing deniers. We have active scientific equipment on the moon that anyone can use with a powerful enough laser. We placed multiple reflectors on the moon so that we could measure distance. We use them often to calculate the movements of the moon against the movements of the Earth. They can do this themselves if they were so inclined. Stupid people, who think we're making up the science we've done, will always insist we're making it up. ie: the evolution argument.

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.