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China’s Chang’e 4 Still Operational

Ten days have passed since China’s project Chang’e 4 started. The Lunar rover remained in operation with operators and crossed the dark side of the moon for its first 10 days. The Chang’e 4 has succeeded in sending back pictures from the surface of the moon and performing scientific work. The project uses Chang’e 4 landers and a remotely controlled rover to relay information back to the surface of the moon together with the Qualia communication satellite

Ironically, the Chang’e 4 is a reserve vehicle for the Yutu rover that successfully landed on the mission that sent the Chang’e 3. On October 5, both Chang’e three and Yutu 2 were in an inert state staying being in preparation for the 10th lunar night. Temperatures drop dramatically to negative 190 degrees Celsius during the two-week-long lunar night, introducing a threat to the running state of the rover almost every time.

The Yutu managed to manoeuvre 16.7 meters on the lunar day from the 22nd to the 23rd day, which was the shortest distance ever covered in one day. However, the short distance can be a cursor that the rover might be measuring samples of peculiar substance from the impact crater Centre, on its eighth day of operation. This strange substance was seen to have a rather gooish gel-like consistency. Although the team is not sure, they speculate that the gooey gel-like substance is likely to come from the impact melt glass of the meteor strike.

On its second lunar day, the rover preceding the Yutu 2 lost its mobility Due to difficulties in servicing on the moon, the first Yutu short-circuited. However, Yutu 2’s performance will be challenged by the rough terrain. The rover has moved for a considerable distance of 289 metres while going westward towards the Tianhe Station, the landing spot of this year’s Chang’e 4.

The rovers map showing where it was during its mission, has not been officially published. Although, it was generated by a cartographer called Phillip Stooke from the Centre for Planetary Science and Exploration University in Ontario. Nevertheless, there was a word that both rovers were confirmed to be operational on October 6. On the 3rd of January 2019, the historical lunar shuttle landing at Von Karman became the first mechanical rover to land on the far side of the moon independently.

There have been comments from mission operators that both rovers are operating well, with the clarification coming from the newly sent Chang’e 4

This post was originally published on Food and Beverage Herald

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