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Space Saturday, December 14th 2013 at 4:00 pm

China Landed An Unmanned Spacecraft On The Moon, Which Is Pretty Cool

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China

For the first time in almost forty years, an unmanned spacecraft has landed on the moon. This time, it is the Chinese behind the soft-landing, settling their Chang’e 3 probe onto lunar soil alongside similar landers from the US and Soviet Union.

Named after a lunar goddess, the Chang’e 3 carries a solar-powered buggy called “Yutu” – or “Jade Rabbit” – which will venture out across the lunar surface, carrying out geological surveys controlled by the Chinese with help from the ESA. Xinhua news reports that the Chang’e 3 landed in the Bay of Rainbows, an as-yet-unexplored area of the Moon with plenty of sunlight for buggy-power.

The Chang’e 3 landing is the first unmanned moon landing since 1976, and is part of China’s plans to expand their space-based projects, which include an experimental space laboratory, satellite system, and even a potential working space station.

Seriously, though, an “experimental space laboratory” sounds like the best office ever.

(via Reuters, image via Joel Raupe)

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