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China's Chang'e-3 moon rover to be launched early December

English.news.cn   2013-11-26 13:32:57            

BEIJING, Nov. 26 (Xinhuanet) -- China has held its first press conference on the Chang'e-3 moon rover mission, which will be called "Yutu". The State Administration for Science, Technology and Industry for National Defense says the lunar rover, will be launched in early December.

Its spokesman Wu Zhijian says the rover has been transferred to southwest China’s Xichang Satellite Launch Center. Wu says the the probe will practice soft-landing on the moon, explore the moon’s surface, and create a space engineering system for lunar patrolling. The rover will also send back 3D images, infrared spectrums and lunar soil analysis.

The Chang’e-3 moon probe is part of the second stage of China’s three-stage lunar mission. It includes orbiting, landing, and analyzing lunar soil and stone samples. China launched Chang’e-1 in 2007 and Chang’e-2 in 2010.

The first probe collected a large body of data and a completed map of the moon. The second mission greatly enhanced the resolution of the previous map and generated a high-definition image of Sinus Iridium, a plain of basaltic lava.

(Source: CNTV.cn)

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