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What We Can Learn From China's Far-Side Moon Landing

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What We Can Learn From China's Far-Side Moon Landing

What We Can Learn From China's Far-Side Moon Landing

The far side of the moon has long been a target of space programs because it could hold keys to unlock the history of our planet and lunar neighbor.

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What We Can Learn From China's Far-Side Moon Landing

At the start of 2019, China did something no other space program has ever done —  land a spacecraft  on the surface of the far side of the moon.

The unprecedented mission could help us make new discoveries about the history of Earth and our lunar neighbor.

One reason we've only sent spacecraft to the  near side  of the moon is because spacecraft need to face Earth in order to establish a direct radio link with ground control.

When a spacecraft dips behind the moon, it can lose that radio signal.  To get around this, Chinese scientists  sent a satellite  roughly 40,000 miles beyond the moon to act as a relay device.

From its position, the satellite will maintain a constant line of sight between ground-based stations and the spacecraft to bounce communications between the two.

SEE MORE: How A NASA Probe Will Orbit An Asteroid With Almost No Gravity China's rover will explore the lunar surface, using a series of scientific instruments to study one of the moon's largest and  oldest impact craters.

 Researchers are hoping to find and study exposed material from the deep lunar mantle to see if it can shed any light on the moon's evolution, including how the crater may have formed.

This mission will also provide astronomers an opportunity take astronomical observations from the far side of the moon with no electromagnetic interference.

Researchers think this could be an excellent place to perform  clear radio astronomy  because the far side of the moon is shielded from Earth's radio noise.




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