Of ChinaMakes the most of his short stay on the moon. The spacecraft sent back a huge bizarre view from its post on the lunar plain of the relatively young volcano Lunar Rock.
The image above is about half of a full high-resolution shot, showing the mountains away from the lander’s vantage point and also how the craft’s feet were dug into the moon’s soft, gravel-like surface on Tuesday’s touchdown. (Download the full file here.) Especially zooming around the lander’s feet provides a real sense of desolate, dry, desert-like terrain.
Images of the mission’s aspirations have also been shared on Chinese social media, showing hundreds of images taken during the descent and during the landing in a simultaneous video:
The Chang5 mission aims to use a drill and robotic arm on a lander to collect soil and rock samples that will later be loaded into a climbing vehicle for transport in a waiting orbiter that will bring them back home.
Other video clips from the Chinese media making the rounds show the lander’s robotic arm and the already rigorous drill at work.
The full working phase of the mission to the lunar surface is scheduled for a few days only, with the expected ascent of the ascending module a week later and the return of the specimen to Earth in mid-December.
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