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selvaarchi
2014-Jul-31, 03:52 AM
China has so far sent 3 probes to the moon. The last one a lander and a rover. That was Chang'e 3. As the rover (Yutu ) had problems half way through it's mission many including me expected China to launch its backup Chang'e 4 to complete it.

That is not going to be the case according to the latest information coming out of China. Instead they will be cannibalising it to support Chang'e 5 and Chang'e 6 missions.

Chang'e 5 is on schedule for a 2017 launch

http://www.chinatopix.com/articles/5136/20140729/china-sets-sights-2017-sample-return-lunar-mission.htm

The Chang'e 4 backup probe for Chang'e 3 will be used for Change'e 5 and Chang'e 6 lunar missions. Despite China's progress in space exploration, Wu noted China lagged behind the United States and Russia in the spacerace.

NEOWatcher
2014-Jul-31, 12:31 PM
The Chang'e 4 backup probe for Chang'e 3 will be used for Change'e 5 and Chang'e 6 lunar missions.
It would be interesting to know what parts will be used.
With Chang'e 4 being a rover, and Chang'e 5 being a lander and sample return, I can't think of much that they share in common.
Perhaps some of the translunar equipment, communications and maybe landing systems.



Despite China's progress in space exploration, Wu noted China lagged behind the United States and Russia in the spacerace.
What race? Race implies completing a stated task in a shorter amount of time or before a specified time. What is the task of the race and when will it be know that it ends?

selvaarchi
2014-Jul-31, 01:31 PM
It would be interesting to know what parts will be used.
With Chang'e 4 being a rover, and Chang'e 5 being a lander and sample return, I can't think of much that they share in common.
Perhaps some of the translunar equipment, communications and maybe landing systems.



What race? Race implies completing a stated task in a shorter amount of time or before a specified time. What is the task of the race and when will it be know that it ends?
You must have misinterpreted it. Chang'e 5 will have all the capabilities of Chang'e 4 plus the capability to return with the samples. Its rover will also have the capability to dig 2 meters, collect samples.

As for the space race, he must be interpreting the same as I was with the space race thread. My interpretation is China still has a long way to go before it catches up with the USA or Russia.

NEOWatcher
2014-Jul-31, 04:40 PM
You must have misinterpreted it. Chang'e 5 will have all the capabilities of Chang'e 4 plus the capability to return with the samples. Its rover will also have the capability to dig 2 meters, collect samples.
I have never heard "rover" as it applies to Chang'5.
I have never heard what the capabilities of Chang'4.
I do have several references to what Chang'5 carries. None of it is a rover.
http://aviationweek.com/space/china-plans-2017-lunar-sample-return-mission
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chang%27e_5
From the images I've seen (examples here (http://news.softpedia.com/news/China-to-Lead-Moon-Sample-Return-Mission-in-3-Years-412272.shtml), here (http://www.dailygalaxy.com/my_weblog/2011/06/-weekend-news-flash-chinas-change-2-mission-heads-for-deep-space-lagrangian-point-signals-new-space-.html) and here (http://spaceports.blogspot.com/2013/12/change-5-to-return-moon-soil-sample-in.html)). the return module is using the space in the lander that Yutu used.

If you know of anywhere that specifically says that Chang'e 5 has a rover, I'd like to see it.

selvaarchi
2014-Jul-31, 10:28 PM
I have never heard "rover" as it applies to Chang'5.
I have never heard what the capabilities of Chang'4.
I do have several references to what Chang'5 carries. None of it is a rover.
http://aviationweek.com/space/china-plans-2017-lunar-sample-return-mission
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chang%27e_5
From the images I've seen (examples here (http://news.softpedia.com/news/China-to-Lead-Moon-Sample-Return-Mission-in-3-Years-412272.shtml), here (http://www.dailygalaxy.com/my_weblog/2011/06/-weekend-news-flash-chinas-change-2-mission-heads-for-deep-space-lagrangian-point-signals-new-space-.html) and here (http://spaceports.blogspot.com/2013/12/change-5-to-return-moon-soil-sample-in.html)). the return module is using the space in the lander that Yutu used.

If you know of anywhere that specifically says that Chang'e 5 has a rover, I'd like to see it.
Chang'e 4 was a backup to Chang'e 3. The answers to your question are in the first few sentences of the article I started the thread with. It says 2017 Chang'e 5 rover mission. It then goes on to explain that they first have to deal with mechanical problems found in China's previous Chang'e 3 lunar mission last year.



" China hopes to become the second nation to send humans to the moon, but first must settle for lunar probes, including a 2017 Chang'e 5 rover mission aimed at returning lunar samples to Earth.

Development of China's Chang'e 5 lander and Yutu, or "Jade Rabbit" rover mission to the moon continues on course, according to Chinese space officials.

Officials, however, cautioned they first have to deal with mechanical problems found in China's previous Chang'e 3 lunar mission last year. They are confident of success."

NEOWatcher
2014-Aug-01, 12:02 PM
I suspect that it may be a mistake by the reporter, but I could be wrong. That's why I am trying to find more information.

I have seen several links relating the Chang'e missions as a 3 phased program where phase 2 is specifically for soft landing an rovers.
The omission of the word "rover", coupled with the payload requirements of the same lander make me doubt they will add a rover to it.

I found this article (http://www.wantchinatimes.com/news-subclass-cnt.aspx?id=20140725000062&cid=1104) from a week ago (before the announcement of cannabalizing Chang'4) that said: "It is still unclear if China will make a Yutu-2"

You are going by phrasing of one reporter's words. I am going by the ommision of any detail. I guess we will have to wait and see.

Even without a rover, it will be a grand accomplishment.

selvaarchi
2014-Aug-01, 05:11 PM
I suspect that it may be a mistake by the reporter, but I could be wrong. That's why I am trying to find more information.

I have seen several links relating the Chang'e missions as a 3 phased program where phase 2 is specifically for soft landing an rovers.
The omission of the word "rover", coupled with the payload requirements of the same lander make me doubt they will add a rover to it.

I found this article (http://www.wantchinatimes.com/news-subclass-cnt.aspx?id=20140725000062&cid=1104) from a week ago (before the announcement of cannabalizing Chang'4) that said: "It is still unclear if China will make a Yutu-2"

You are going by phrasing of one reporter's words. I am going by the ommision of any detail. I guess we will have to wait and see.

Even without a rover, it will be a grand accomplishment.

I am going on what I would do if I was exploring a foreign world. I certainly would not want samples of just the area surrounding where I landed. What if it was solid rock, I will not be able to dig. I will certainly send a rover to explore the surrounding areas and try and bring back the most interesting samples I could find.

That will be the reason for their sequence - Phase 1 - try and get to the moon (Chang'e 1 & 2) Phase 2 - land a rover and explore the surrounding (Chang'e 3). This accomplished all its objectives, although the rover got crippled on the 2nd lunar day. So instead of another rover mission (Chang'e 4) why not send a probe with a sample return capsule to circle the moon and return to Earth and recover the capsule. Phase 3 - the sample return

Sounds reasonable:D .

The article you found a week ago is the same as the one I reported in the thread "How-long-until-we-colonize-the-moon" #255 from spaceDaily.

publiusr
2014-Aug-02, 07:16 PM
Some points from this article
http://www.thespacereview.com/article/2544/1

About the Yutu: "Independent observers noted that the lander was far larger than necessary to carry the smallish Yutu."

In terms of sample return:
"Rather than launching the samples straight from the Moon back to Earth, the plan is to put a large craft into lunar orbit and send the lander down. The samples would then be launched back into lunar orbit on an ascent spacecraft that would rendezvous with the mother craft. The samples would be transferred to the Earth reentry vehicle, which would be boosted out of lunar orbit and back to Earth. This will require a new, more powerful rocket currently under development...In contrast, the Chinese reentry vehicle is rather large. A human could actually climb inside it, although it is obviously not intended for that purpose."

With CZ-9, and a little more time...

selvaarchi
2014-Aug-05, 04:01 AM
More speculation on China's moon plans. This time by Dr Morris Jones (he has authored several articles on China's space ambitions)

http://www.spacedaily.com/reports/Chinas_Circumlunar_Spacecraft_Unmasked_999.html


Later this year, China will send a spacecraft out to the Moon, then return it to Earth. The uncrewed vehicle will fly around the far side of the Moon and use the Moon's gravity to slingshot it back to Earth. As it approaches the home planet, the spacecraft will release a capsule that will parachute to a soft landing.

Officially, the mission is designed to test a re-entry capsule to be used in a future robotic lunar-sample return mission. In this analyst's opinion, the mission is also designed to prepare for a future Chinese astronaut launch to the Moon. Filling this information vacuum, I have now prepared a rough diagram of the expected layout of China's first circumlunar spacecraft.

publiusr
2014-Aug-09, 05:07 PM
pretty much a repeat of the old (rump Soyuz) ZONDs

selvaarchi
2014-Aug-10, 12:23 PM
No more speculation. China has announced that they will send a spacecraft out to the Moon, then return it to Earth. The uncrewed vehicle will fly around the far side of the Moon and use the Moon's gravity to slingshot it back to Earth. As it approaches the home planet, the spacecraft will release a capsule that will parachute to a soft landing.

http://news.xinhuanet.com/english/china/2014-08/10/c_133546027.htm


China is preparing for the launch of an experimental recoverable moon orbiter, said the State Administration of Science, Technology and Industry for National Defence on Sunday.

The orbiter arrived in Xichang via air in southwest China's Sichuan Province on Sunday and then transported to the Xichang Satellite Launch Center, according to a statement from the administration.

The launch will take place before the end of this year, it said.

The plan is for the orbiter to be launched into lunar orbit and return to Earth at an escape velocity of 11.2 km per second.

The orbiter is one of the test models for China's new lunar probe Chang'e-5, which will be tasked with landing on the moon, collecting samples and returning to Earth.

The launch is aimed at testing the technologies that are vital for the success of Chang'e-5, the statement said.

photo of it being transported

https://www.facebook.com/ChinaSpace/photos/a.766140943446909.1073741931.237730352954640/766141080113562/?type=1&theater

selvaarchi
2014-Aug-11, 11:56 AM
More speculation by Dr Morris Jones on China's plans after China announced on Sunday that it is preparing for the launch of an experimental recoverable moon orbiter.

http://www.spacedaily.com/reports/More_Tasks_for_Chinas_Moon_Mission_999.html


China has a long and proud tradition of flying seeds and other lifeforms in orbit, but it has never launched a biological experiment into deep space. This will be a big breakthrough for China's space biomedical program. The lunar environment will expose the samples to different levels of radiation than are found in near-Earth space.

How long will the spacecraft stay in lunar orbit? It could literally be weeks. The spacecraft must simulate the time it would take for another robotic spacecraft to land on the Moon, collect samples, place those samples in a small launch vehicle and fly them to a rendezvous in lunar orbit.

We don't know how long that will take, but it should at least be a matter of days. Then there's the question of windows for the return to Earth and a touchdown at China's landing site in Inner Mongolia. The on-board samples would also gain from a prolonged exposure to deep space. So China will probably be in no hurry to bring its spacecraft home.

NEOWatcher
2014-Aug-11, 03:09 PM
No more speculation.
What speculation has been solved?
We were talking about Chang'e 5. This article is not about Chang'e 5, but a test mission leading up to it that doesn't include any landing hardware.


More speculation
See?

selvaarchi
2014-Aug-11, 03:20 PM
What speculation has been solved?
We were talking about Chang'e 5. This article is not about Chang'e 5, but a test mission leading up to it that doesn't include any landing hardware.


See?
This test mission was not in the original plan for the Chinese moon project. It was then speculated it might happen. It was only on Sunday that China confirmed it will happen. Do not remember reading if they have given this mission a name.

NEOWatcher
2014-Aug-11, 03:30 PM
This test mission was not in the original plan for the Chinese moon project.
We don't know that.

Where was it had speculated if it would or would not happen?

selvaarchi
2014-Aug-11, 03:44 PM
We don't know that.

Where was it had speculated if it would or would not happen?
Their missions are very structured. 1 and 2 were to orbit the moon. 3 and 4 the lander and rover. 5 and 6 the sample return.

As 3 met their technical objectives, they have stated that 4 will do something additional but have not started what. It is not this mission that has just been announced.

NEOWatcher
2014-Aug-11, 04:33 PM
As 3 met their technical objectives, they have stated that 4 will do something additional but have not started what. It is not this mission that has just been announced.
Maybe it wasn't in the orginal plans, but the official word in your OP link said that 4 will not be used and instead utilized for 5.
This is not a clarification of speculation, but an actual contradiction to what they announced.

selvaarchi
2014-Aug-11, 09:15 PM
Maybe it wasn't in the orginal plans, but the official word in your OP link said that 4 will not be used and instead utilized for 5.
This is not a clarification of speculation, but an actual contradiction to what they announced.
It is a one liner in the press release by China that says 4 will be adapted to support 5.

http://news.xinhuanet.com/english/china/2014-08/10/c_133546027.htm

NEOWatcher
2014-Aug-12, 12:32 PM
It is a one liner in the press release by China that says 4 will be adapted to support 5.
And the OP article also said "used for".
So if 4 is being used or adapted or in some way associated with 5, then the test orbiter is either something different, or they have changed their mind about using 4 for 5. None of that was speculated.

selvaarchi
2014-Aug-12, 12:40 PM
And the OP article also said "used for".
So if 4 is being used or adapted or in some way associated with 5, then the test orbiter is either something different, or they have changed their mind about using 4 for 5. None of that was speculated.
The way I read it, the orbiter is something new and I have not seen a name associated with the mission yet. Not sure how they plan to modify 4 to support 5. There was a report they might use components of 4 in 5.

NEOWatcher
2014-Aug-12, 12:57 PM
The way I read it, the orbiter is something new and I have not seen a name associated with the mission yet. Not sure how they plan to modify 4 to support 5. There was a report they might use components of 4 in 5.
I don't think it's new. I think it was just an unannounced test of the orbiter for 5. Since they already landed a lot of the components in 3 (thus being able to use the 4 components in 5), they need to work out the orbiter which is a new piece of hardware in the series of missions.

selvaarchi
2014-Aug-13, 08:24 AM
Dr Morris Jones speculation that the next probe by China will not sling shot around the moon and return to earth has been confirmed by the latest news from China. No news on his speculation the probe will be carrying some biological experiments.

http://english.cntv.cn/2014/08/12/VIDE1407787437777505.shtml


With the launch scheduled for later this year, the probe will travel all the way to the moon and enter its orbit. Tests will then be carried out to see if the probe can escape the moon’s orbit, and enter a flight path back to earth.

selvaarchi
2014-Aug-13, 10:55 AM
A report in the Chinese press says Chang'e-5 probe will launch only in 2020. This is 3 years later then previous reports. Not sure if this was a typo or because of the typhoon that hit the launch site or problems with the development of the Long March 5.

http://news.xinhuanet.com/english/china/2014-07/21/c_133498925.htm


The mission will be conducted by the Chang'e-5 probe around 2020, he said, adding that Chang'e-5 will be transported by the nation's first heavy-lift rocket, the Long March-5, in the new launch center at Wenchang on the island province of Hainan.

NEOWatcher
2014-Aug-13, 12:11 PM
Dr Morris Jones speculation that the next probe by China will not sling shot around the moon and return to earth has been confirmed by the latest news from China.
Your link in post 11 said that from the same people when they said it will enter lunar orbit.

NEOWatcher
2014-Aug-13, 12:15 PM
A report in the Chinese press says Chang'e-5 probe will launch only in 2020.
That's too bad...


This is 3 years later then previous reports. Not sure if this was a typo or because of the typhoon that hit the launch site or problems with the development of the Long March 5.
Sounds like neither. Your OP link was an optimistic view of the date. There were two statements in there that left that in doubt.

Officials, however, cautioned they first have to deal with mechanical problems found in China's previous Chang'e 3 lunar mission last year.

"The program's third phase will be more difficult because many breakthroughs must be made in key technologies...

selvaarchi
2014-Aug-13, 01:25 PM
Your link in post 11 said that from the same people when they said it will enter lunar orbit.

At that point most reports took it to mean to go around the moon and return to earth. Dr Morris Jones article was the 1st one I came across that stated it will stay in lunar orbit sometime but rereading post 11 it could also mean just that.

selvaarchi
2014-Aug-13, 01:28 PM
That's too bad...


Sounds like neither. Your OP link was an optimistic view of the date. There were two statements in there that left that in doubt.

If that was the case, I would have expected then to rectify the problem with Yutu and send the backup probe Chang'e 4. That is not the case.

NEOWatcher
2014-Aug-13, 02:55 PM
If that was the case, I would have expected then to rectify the problem with Yutu and send the backup probe Chang'e 4. That is not the case.
Only if they need to test it there. It could be that the problems can be rectified and tested here on Earth.

selvaarchi
2014-Aug-18, 12:48 PM
China is building up their infrastructure to support their moon quest.

https://www.facebook.com/ChinaSpace/photos/a.770044329723237.1073741932.237730352954640/770045329723137/?type=1&theater


A new 25m radio telescope is under construction in Xinjiang. It will be used to support the third phase of lunar exploration.

selvaarchi
2014-Aug-29, 04:00 PM
This article seems to imply Chang'e 4 has been modified from a lander to orbiting the moon and returning to earth. Find that not quiet right but only time will tell.

http://www.space-travel.com/reports/China_Aims_for_the_Moon_Plans_to_Bring_Back_Lunar_ Soil_999.html


Within the framework of the program, a younger generation test vehicle, Chang'e 4, is scheduled to take off later this year to pave the way for the third phase sample-return mission. The lunar test orbiter has already arrived at the Xichang launch site in the southwestern province of Sichuan in China.

Its initial purpose was to back-up the Chang'e 3, however, because of the third mission's success, the configuration of the orbiter changed to testing new equipment including its abilities in flight sequence control, allowing scientists to perfect orbit design of lunar vehicles, and practicing to keep the unmanned spacecraft orbitally stable.

"Scientists believe we need to launch the spacecraft to prove that our current technical plan can actually bring Chang'e 5 home safely," Chief Designer of the Chang'e 5, Hu Hao was cited as saying by Space Industry News.

Upon returning to Earth with lunar rock and soil samples, the Chang'e 5 will be falling through the planet's atmosphere at an escape velocity of 11.2 kilometers per second. China's spacecraft have never before re-entered the atmosphere at such high speeds and, according to Hu, no simulation test is able to recreate such an event. "The re-entry speed means the return capsule could overheat or prove difficult to track and control," Hu said.

NEOWatcher
2014-Aug-29, 04:13 PM
This article seems to imply Chang'e 4 has been modified from a lander to orbiting the moon and returning to earth. Find that not quiet right but only time will tell.
Chang'e is a combination of many things. Lander, orbiter, Lander payload.
The article mentions Chang'e 4 as a generality and as an orbiter. So; it sounds like the emphasis is on those components.

But; being that Chang'e 5 will be a landing mission with new hardware, they may as well tote along the lander component even if they don't land it. That way they can test systems integration.

The change seems to be the payload the lander portion would be carrying. The sample return has to be tested, and that's a component carried by the lander.

selvaarchi
2014-Aug-29, 08:38 PM
Chang'e is a combination of many things. Lander, orbiter, Lander payload.
The article mentions Chang'e 4 as a generality and as an orbiter. So; it sounds like the emphasis is on those components.

But; being that Chang'e 5 will be a landing mission with new hardware, they may as well tote along the lander component even if they don't land it. That way they can test systems integration.

The change seems to be the payload the lander portion would be carrying. The sample return has to be tested, and that's a component carried by the lander.

If they do that, I wonder if they will test the separation of the lander while in lunar orbit and then the docking before returning it to earth?

NEOWatcher
2014-Sep-02, 12:18 PM
If they do that, I wonder if they will test the separation of the lander while in lunar orbit and then the docking before returning it to earth?
It looks like they would have to.
Here's an article (http://www.thespacereview.com/article/2544/1) with an illustration of the entire craft. The re-entry vehicle is between the lander and the orbiter, so the whole craft has to separate.
And; the ascent vehicle is on top of the lander. So; it too, must separate and re-dock with the re-entry vehicle.

I'm not too fond of that whole article though. It says that the Chinese have been open about their programs. They have been in a very general basis, but more detailed information only comes after a successful mission.

And; like everyone else, they take the temporary lull in NASA's human lift capability as an opportunity to say that human spaceflight is stalled even though we keep sending astronauts to a space station. And yes, NASA is not racing anyone to the moon. While that goal is debatable, they have different BEO goals that others do not have.
(But is right about it changing with each administration).

selvaarchi
2014-Sep-02, 01:20 PM
And; like everyone else, they take the temporary lull in NASA's human lift capability as an opportunity to say that human spaceflight is stalled even though we keep sending astronauts to a space station. And yes, NASA is not racing anyone to the moon. While that goal is debatable, they have different BEO goals that others do not have.
(But is right about it changing with each administration).

I do not think you should blame that comment on the Chinese but on the author. The Chines have been consistent in saying they are not in a race with anyone and would welcome international cooperation on space projects.

NEOWatcher
2014-Sep-02, 01:25 PM
I do not think you should blame that comment on the Chinese but on the author.
I don't.
I thought prefacing those remarks with "I'm not too fond of that whole article" was clear.

selvaarchi
2014-Sep-14, 05:32 AM
China is building a satellite tracking station in Argentine Patagonia to help with its lunar exploration.

http://en.mercopress.com/2014/09/12/china-constructing-a-satellite-tracking-station-in-argentine-patagonia

selvaarchi
2014-Oct-10, 01:16 PM
We now have a date for the next lunar probe. Two weeks from today - 24/10/2014. I find it interesting that they call it "Chang'e 5 moon return test mission" and not - Chang'e 4 moon return test mission.

https://www.facebook.com/ChinaSpace/photos/a.766140943446909.1073741931.237730352954640/796092893785047/?type=1&theater


Chang'e 5 moon return test mission is scheduled for launch on 2014-10-24 from Xichang Satellite Launch Center on a Long March 3C rocket.

NEOWatcher
2014-Oct-13, 12:31 PM
I find it interesting that they call it "Chang'e 5 moon return test mission" and not - Chang'e 4 moon return test mission.
Chang'e 4 was a specific mission with it's own goals. This is a test for 5.
They've been saying 4 was dropped to be used for 5 test ever since they announced it.

Here's a bit more (http://space.skyrocket.de/doc_sdat/change-5-t1.htm).
It does answer the question I've had all along. It's only an orbiter, and only a test of the return capsule.

selvaarchi
2014-Oct-13, 02:35 PM
Chang'e 4 was a specific mission with it's own goals. This is a test for 5.
They've been saying 4 was dropped to be used for 5 test ever since they announced it.

Here's a bit more (http://space.skyrocket.de/doc_sdat/change-5-t1.htm).
It does answer the question I've had all along. It's only an orbiter, and only a test of the return capsule.
We will know in 10 days. The only official information I have been able to find is on their Facebook page. I find that a bit unusual. Normally the the Chinese papers will carry a report before it comes out on Facebook.

NEOWatcher
2014-Oct-13, 02:57 PM
We will know in 10 days.
We will know what? What don't we know at this point other than the uncertainties of detailed information?
There has been plenty of stuff out on the web for several months, including stories that were talking about an October launch.

selvaarchi
2014-Oct-13, 03:01 PM
We will know what? What don't we know at this point other than the uncertainties of detailed information?
There has been plenty of stuff out on the web for several months, including stories that were talking about an October launch.
Is there going to be a Chang'e 4 and a Chang'e 5A mission or is it one and the same.

NEOWatcher
2014-Oct-13, 03:28 PM
Is there going to be a Chang'e 4 and a Chang'e 5A mission or is it one and the same.
:confused:
You started this thread with an article that says there is no longer Chang'e 4 mission.

As the discussion progressed, we learned more details about Chang'e 5-T1 (this launch).

The only thing that I see different than where the discussion has been going is that the components from 4 are not being used in 5, but being used as an actual test of components of 5 prior to its mission.

selvaarchi
2014-Oct-13, 04:13 PM
:confused:
You started this thread with an article that says there is no longer Chang'e 4 mission.

As the discussion progressed, we learned more details about Chang'e 5-T1 (this launch).

The only thing that I see different than where the discussion has been going is that the components from 4 are not being used in 5, but being used as an actual test of components of 5 prior to its mission.
Looking for some confirmation that Chang'e 4 has been dropped and replaced by Chang'e 5A. Read something thing recently (but I can not now lay my hands on it) that still talked Chang'e 4.

NEOWatcher
2014-Oct-13, 04:56 PM
Looking for some confirmation that Chang'e 4 has been dropped and replaced by Chang'e 5A. Read something thing recently (but I can not now lay my hands on it) that still talked Chang'e 4.
You mean the statement by China's State Administration of Science and Technology head in your OP article back in July isn't convincing enough?

selvaarchi
2014-Oct-15, 04:07 AM
Looks like the authors of most reports I have read still use Chang'e 4 (as in the report in the link below). The reference to Chang'e 5-T1 is only in China's Facebook post.

An interesting bit of information in it, was China is taking all opportunities to do commercial work for other countries.
Onboard China's moon-bound booster is a hitchhiking payload provided by the European space technology company OHB AG. This private "4M mission" to the moon is dedicated to OHB founder Manfred Fuchs, who died earlier this year. (4M stands for the Manfred Memorial Moon Mission.)

http://www.space.com/27422-china-moon-mission-launch-october.html


The upcoming launch of the Chang'e 4 mission is expected to take place Oct. 23 from China's Xichang Satellite Launch Center, and will apparently send an experimental, recoverable probe to lunar orbit and back. The goal is to validate re-entry technology for Chang'e 5, a future robotic mission that will land on the moon, collect samples and return those specimens to Earth.

NEOWatcher
2014-Oct-15, 12:49 PM
Looks like the authors of most reports I have read still use Chang'e 4 (as in the report in the link below). The reference to Chang'e 5-T1 is only in China's Facebook post.
Almost every link in this thread says there is no Chang'e 4 mission and the hardware is being used for Chang'e 5. I don't know where you get "most".

I think what is making the confusion is that it is still Chang'4 hardware, but the mission parameters have changed to become a Chang'e 5 mission. So; in some way, it is both, depending on whether you are talking mission or hardware.

selvaarchi
2014-Oct-18, 09:47 PM
Almost every link in this thread says there is no Chang'e 4 mission and the hardware is being used for Chang'e 5. I don't know where you get "most".

I think what is making the confusion is that it is still Chang'4 hardware, but the mission parameters have changed to become a Chang'e 5 mission. So; in some way, it is both, depending on whether you are talking mission or hardware.

With 4 days to go before launch of China's latest moon probe, a report that has a mention of the name change.

http://www.chinatopix.com/articles/17060/20141016/china-moon-mission-launches-next-week-change-3-lunar-change-5-space-casc-xichang.htm


Still to go is the tweener in the Chang'e series, the Chang'e 4. That mission will test technologies adapted from Chang'e 3 for the Chang'e 5 slated for a 2018 rendezvous with the Moon. Some reports say the Chang'e 4 may undergo a name change to the Chang 5 T1.

NEOWatcher
2014-Oct-20, 12:19 PM
With 4 days to go before launch of China's latest moon probe, a report that has a mention of the name change.

Some reports say the Chang'e 4 may undergo a name change to the Chang 5 T1.

"some", just like "some" articles have been saying it all along like I mentioned.

My point was that I want to know where you get "most" in post 45.

selvaarchi
2014-Oct-20, 01:36 PM
"some", just like "some" articles have been saying it all along like I mentioned.

My point was that I want to know where you get "most" in post 45.

The only report I have read that says the next moon mission is Chang 5 T1 is on the China Facebook post. All others were either Chang'e 4 or in support of Chang'e 5 mission. Would like to know where you read differently?

This article from spaceflight101.com says it better then I can.

http://www.spaceflight101.com/change-5-test-mission-updates.html


Not a single image or diagram of the Chang’e 5 Test Vehicle has been released by the Chinese, nor has an official name for the mission been confirmed by its operator, the Chinese Lunar Exploration Program (CLEP). This created a fair amount of confusion in the media as numerous outlets began calling the mission Chang’e 4 – which would be next in line after Chang’e 3 but was identified as China’s second lunar lander/rover mission earlier on.

NEOWatcher
2014-Oct-20, 02:11 PM
The only report I have read that says the next moon mission is Chang 5 T1 is on the China Facebook post. All others were either Chang'e 4 or in support of Chang'e 5 mission. Would like to know where you read differently?
I just went back to review links in this thread.
I have not seen any that actually called the mission Chang'e 4. I have read that this is the Chang'e 4 hardware.
All the references have been vague, and most have called them the test for 5.

You were surprised at the Facebook post, and you still didn't seem to believe that.

selvaarchi
2014-Oct-22, 11:33 AM
1st official news I have read of the upcoming launch of the moon craft. Still no name mentioned of name other then "a new lunar mission".

http://news.xinhuanet.com/english/sci/2014-10/22/c_133734632.htm


China will launch a new lunar mission this week to test technology likely to be used in Chang'e-5, a future lunar probe with the ability to return to Earth.

The experimental spacecraft launched this week is expected to reach a location near the moon and return to Earth, according to a source with the State Administration of Science, Technology and Industry for National Defense on Wednesday.

The test model is currently in normal condition and is scheduled to launch between Friday and Sunday from the Xichang Satellite Launch Center.

NEOWatcher
2014-Oct-22, 12:55 PM
1st official news I have read of the upcoming launch of the moon craft. Still no name mentioned of name other then "a new lunar mission".
Who is running that facebook page you keep referring to?

I was under the impression that it was the space program's web page, thus being news "straight from the horses mouth" which implies "official".
You reported their post 2 weeks ago stating an Oct 24th launch.

This article shows nothing. It's an official news source, but they don't cite what their source of information is. It does look like a press release though.

selvaarchi
2014-Oct-22, 02:26 PM
Who is running that facebook page you keep referring to?

I was under the impression that it was the space program's web page, thus being news "straight from the horses mouth" which implies "official".
You reported their post 2 weeks ago stating an Oct 24th launch.

This article shows nothing. It's an official news source, but they don't cite what their source of information is. It does look like a press release though.

I agree with what you say about the Facebook page being run by their space agency. What puzzles me is why the government mouth piece like the Xinhua has not quoted a name for this mission. The latest Facebook page (https://www.facebook.com/ChinaSpace/photos/a.766140943446909.1073741931.237730352954640/802322726495397/?type=1&theater) also says "Chang'e 5 test mission spacecraft".

Still only two days to go and we might get more enlightenment.

selvaarchi
2014-Oct-23, 01:49 PM
This mission has been a guessing game from the beginning. From what I have been able decipher, The probe will go from earth to the moon. Circle around the back of the moon and come back to earth. The re-entry will involve one or more "skips" off the Earth's atmosphere to slow the spacecraft before final re-entry. No other information has been published. The spacedaily calls it China's Secret Moon Mission. (http://www.spacedaily.com/reports/Chinas_Secret_Moon_Mission_999.html) They also ran this article (http://www.spacedaily.com/reports/Chinas_space_policy_gets_even_tighter_999.html)

The launch will be either this Friday or Saturday.

http://news.xinhuanet.com/english/sci/2014-10/23/c_133736775.htm


China will launch an experimental spacecraft between Friday and Sunday to test a key technology designed to help a future lunar probe return to Earth with soil samples.

The unnamed spacecraft is due to reach a location near the moon before returning to Earth, said a spokesman for the China National Space Administration, which announced the launch on Wednesday.

It will be China's first lunar module to return to Earth, at a speed close to 11.2 km per second, space experts said.

NEOWatcher
2014-Oct-23, 02:07 PM
This mission has been a guessing game from the beginning.
Yep; that's why I wait for actual information... at least from China.


From what I have been able decipher, The probe will go from earth to the moon. Circle around the back of the moon and come back to earth. The re-entry will involve one or more "skips" off the Earth's atmosphere to slow the spacecraft before final re-entry.
From what you can decipher? Your previous link flat out said so (except the part about the back of the moon). Nothing to decipher.
They said "near" the moon, not "around" the moon. Although with translation issues going around the moon does involve getting near it.



They also ran this article (http://www.spacedaily.com/reports/Chinas_space_policy_gets_even_tighter_999.html)
Their speculation on why the secret did not include the advantages of only leaking successes.
Yes; loosing the publicity can be counter-productive for them. Especially in international cooperation. I completely agree with his assesment.

But; I'm also looking at what else could be driving this secrecy.
If they are secretly putting more into the mission that what we are told, then a partial failure can be publicized as a full success because we don't see those parts.

It just gives me a general feeling of distrust in anything they are talking about, and make me think that vague references and misleading statements are meant to make you think of the success before-hand, but still leave the wording up to interpretation so they can say "no, it meant..."

selvaarchi
2014-Oct-23, 09:38 PM
China has successfully launched its probe to the moon. Tried to get more details and one of it pointed me to Emily Lakdawalla's blog. The blog also contains lots of links for more information and also a link to a 5 min video giving a preview of the mission. Warning - it is all in Mandarin but gives some nice shots of the rocket and the probe.

http://www.planetary.org/blogs/emily-lakdawalla/2014/10230750-china-to-launch-test-mission.html


Some of you may be wondering what happened to Chang'e 4. Chang'e 3 is still operating on the Moon, but there has been no Chang'e 4 yet. Just as with the Chang'e 1 and Chang'e 2 orbiters, there were two lunar landers built in the runup to the Chang'e 3 launch, and the backup spacecraft remains on Earth and may yet be launched in the future as Chang'e 4. The spacecraft that is launching today is not a science mission -- it's an engineering test -- so it's not being numbered as part of the same sequence. It is called 嫦娥五号 试验器, Chang'e 5 Test Vehicle. Unfortunately, there has been some confusion about this in Western media, so you may see media reports about today's launch that name it as Chang'e 4.

selvaarchi
2014-Oct-23, 10:07 PM
Official news from the Chinese press of the launch.

http://news.xinhuanet.com/english/china/2014-10/24/c_127134592.htm


The whole mission will take about eight days. Developed by China Aerospace Science and Technology Corporation, the spacecraft will fly around the moon for half a circle and return to Earth.

On its return, the test spacecraft will approach the terrestrial atmosphere at a velocity of nearly 11.2 kilometers per second and rebound to slow down before re-entering the atmosphere. It will land in north China's Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region.

The mission is to obtain experimental data and validate re-entry technologies such as guidance, navigation and control, heat shield and trajectory design for a future touch-down on the moon by Chang'e-5, which is expected to be sent to the moon, collect samples and return to Earth in 2017.

selvaarchi
2014-Oct-24, 07:17 AM
Rereading all the information on the new launch and comments of the Chinese scientist, on how they are unhappy that they still do not know, what exactly crippled Jade rabbit, I suspect Chang'e-4 is not scraped but will be launched at some point in the future. It will have a lander and rover like Chang'e-3 but be modified to include some elements of Chang'e-5. Exactly what I really do not know. My guess will be to launch the sample return capsule from the moon's surface.

NEOWatcher
2014-Oct-24, 12:15 PM
Official news from the Chinese press of the launch.
http://news.xinhuanet.com/english/china/2014-10/24/c_127134592.htm


It is the first time China has conducted a test involving a half-orbiter around the moon at a height of 380,000 kilometers before having the spacecraft return to Earth.
I think this statement needs a little work.
I don't know if the are indicating that the orbiter is only half the craft of the full mission, or if they are talking about the pass by of the moon on the free-return trajectory. (I think the latter)

I don't think if a moon swing-by can be considered an orbit of the Earth since the moon's gravity becomes dominant.

But; nits aside. Good for them.

NEOWatcher
2014-Oct-24, 12:19 PM
... and also a link to a 5 min video giving a preview of the mission....
I don't know if I can't see these twitter things, or if there is some regional blocking, but I can't see that.

Interesting that there still is no official name. LuxSpace is holding on to the 5-t1 designation pretty solidly.

NEOWatcher
2014-Oct-24, 12:27 PM
Rereading all the information on the new launch and comments of the Chinese scientist, on how they are unhappy that they still do not know, what exactly crippled Jade rabbit, I suspect Chang'e-4 is not scraped but will be launched at some point in the future. It will have a lander and rover like Chang'e-3 but be modified to include some elements of Chang'e-5. Exactly what I really do not know. My guess will be to launch the sample return capsule from the moon's surface.
Certainly they want to know, but Yutu did outlast it's design. So, I don't think they would launch a mission like that with their progression of missions.

If what Ladkawalla is saying is true, it does sound like an option. But; I wonder where she's getting her information.
From what I can see of the hardware, they would have to scrap a large part of Chang'e-5's ability to fit a rover back on the lander. I guess it would work if they remove all the Chang'e 5's instrumentation and mining equipment to make room for the rover. They would have to give the rover some kind of way to pick up and deliver the samples to the return capsule. So; in that case, the rover wouldn't be the same.

I do get tired of these guessing games with them.

selvaarchi
2014-Oct-24, 01:10 PM
I don't know if I can't see these twitter things, or if there is some regional blocking, but I can't see that.

Looking at the wrong place. Look under Background information - "Chinese state television video preview of mission, August 10"

selvaarchi
2014-Oct-24, 01:20 PM
Certainly they want to know, but Yutu did outlast it's design. So, I don't think they would launch a mission like that with their progression of missions.

If what Ladkawalla is saying is true, it does sound like an option. But; I wonder where she's getting her information.
From what I can see of the hardware, they would have to scrap a large part of Chang'e-5's ability to fit a rover back on the lander. I guess it would work if they remove all the Chang'e 5's instrumentation and mining equipment to make room for the rover. They would have to give the rover some kind of way to pick up and deliver the samples to the return capsule. So; in that case, the rover wouldn't be the same.

I do get tired of these guessing games with them.

Look at it the other way around. Chang'e-4 being upgraded to include some of Chang'e-5's capabilities. That will make Chang'e-4 much heavier. I suspect they might launch it using either the test mission of Long March 5 or 7 to take the extra weight. There will not be any samples being returned.

NEOWatcher
2014-Oct-24, 01:25 PM
Looking at the wrong place. Look under Background information - "Chinese state television video preview of mission, August 10"
Thanks (this is the link (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jqBk5uhWKlQ)). But that's not what you first described. (1:23 vs 5 minutes, and no shot of the rocket)
Unfortunately; without knowing what they are seeing, it's hard to tell what's going on because the keep going back and forth between phases of the mission and interject Change'5 elements into it. Most of the video is of a truck driving by (presumably carrying the probe)

I was able to pull up the other link (http://www.weishi.com/t/2003550064078245). 9 seconds containing only the ignition.

(I think my earlier problem is because she's not using direct links, but some link shortcut service)

NEOWatcher
2014-Oct-24, 01:28 PM
Look at it the other way around. Chang'e-4 being upgraded to include some of Chang'e-5's capabilities. That will make Chang'e-4 much heavier. I suspect they might launch it using either the test mission of Long March 5 or 7 to take the extra weight.
The launch vehicle capabilities are not the issue. It's the weight of the landing with the existing hardware that's the issue.


There will not be any samples being returned.
Then what Chang'e 5 capabilities would it need?

selvaarchi
2014-Oct-24, 01:36 PM
Then what Chang'e 5 capabilities would it need?

They are testing the sample return capsule with the current mission by just slinging around the moon and bringing it back to earth. Next I see them landing it on the moon and bringing it back to earth. Chang'e-5 is the mission where they will fill it with samples to bring it back to earth.

NEOWatcher
2014-Oct-24, 01:40 PM
They are testing the sample return capsule with the current mission by just slinging around the moon and bringing it back to earth. Next I see them landing it on the moon and bringing it back to earth. Chang'e-5 is the mission where they will fill it with samples to bring it back to earth.
Now you're confusing me again.
What do you see as "next"... Chang'e 4 or Chang'e 5?
And what do you mean by "bring it back to Earth"? Bring what back?

selvaarchi
2014-Oct-24, 01:51 PM
Now you're confusing me again.
What do you see as "next"... Chang'e 4 or Chang'e 5?
And what do you mean by "bring it back to Earth"? Bring what back?

Chang'e-4 is next and it will have a lander and rover. On top of that it will have the sample return capsule and the ability to launch it off the moon and bring it back to earth. At least that is what I think.

NEOWatcher
2014-Oct-24, 02:24 PM
Chang'e-4 is next and it will have a lander and rover. On top of that it will have the sample return capsule and the ability to launch it off the moon and bring it back to earth. At least that is what I think.
That's the problem I have with the idea. That's a lot of extra weight and equipment that has to land on the moon.
Although; I don't know what the weights or capabilities of the 5 lander are, and if it's the same basic lander as Chang'e 3.

Change'3 had a total mass of 3800 kg to land a 140 kg rover. More than 2/3 was the fuel to land bringing the craft to 1200kg.

If they are different landers, then I'm sure that loading a rocket, capsule, and propellent enough for ascent and return is not going to happen if there is a Change'4.

If not, it would show the capabilities of the return craft. But; by that time, you might as well return samples and launch Chang'e 5.

Another possibility is to put a rover on a later Chang'e mission once the 5 mission is successful.

There's way too many unknowns to make any kind of speculation. That's why I question yours. It seems emotionally based.

selvaarchi
2014-Oct-24, 02:44 PM
That's the problem I have with the idea. That's a lot of extra weight and equipment that has to land on the moon.
Although; I don't know what the weights or capabilities of the 5 lander are, and if it's the same basic lander as Chang'e 3.

Change'3 had a total mass of 3800 kg to land a 140 kg rover. More than 2/3 was the fuel to land bringing the craft to 1200kg.

If they are different landers, then I'm sure that loading a rocket, capsule, and propellent enough for ascent and return is not going to happen if there is a Change'4.

If not, it would show the capabilities of the return craft. But; by that time, you might as well return samples and launch Chang'e 5.

Another possibility is to put a rover on a later Chang'e mission once the 5 mission is successful.

There's way too many unknowns to make any kind of speculation. That's why I question yours. It seems emotionally based.

Most of the comments I have seen, indicate the lander is much bigger then what is required for the rover. Based on that and the US model for the moon landing, I added a launcher to sit on top of the rover. As we keep saying, it is pure speculation but it keeps us busy thinking of the possibilities.

NEOWatcher
2014-Oct-24, 04:11 PM
Most of the comments I have seen, indicate the lander is much bigger then what is required for the rover.
I did question the concept even if the lander is bigger. Putting the sample return on Chang'e 4 (if capable) becomes a Chang'e 5 mission anyway.

selvaarchi
2014-Oct-25, 01:36 AM
I did question the concept even if the lander is bigger. Putting the sample return on Chang'e 4 (if capable) becomes a Chang'e 5 mission anyway.

I am going by they statements the the Chang'e 4 will be modified to support Chang'e 5. They also are not happy that they do not know for sure why the rover stopped working.

So what I am expecting is a upgraded rover that hopefully fixes the problem. Then look at the Chang'e 5 mission and speculate which component they can include in this mission. They are in the process of testing the reentry of the sample return capsule. If that fails then I would expect them to try again in the modified Chang'e 4 mission (the sample return module separating and returning to earth before the lander lands on the moon). If it succeeds then to land it with the lander and then to blast off the moon and return to earth (with no samples).

selvaarchi
2014-Oct-28, 12:05 AM
China keeps surprising me with it's news releases on the latest probe to the moon. The latest news release says the probe will remain in lunar orbit for 32 hours.

http://news.xinhuanet.com/english/sci/2014-10/27/c_133745477.htm

The orbiter, launched Friday last week atop an advanced Long March-3C rocket, entered the Moon's gravitational sphere of influence Monday at noon, and is expected to remain there for the next 32 hours.

It is currently orbiting at around 60,000 kilometers from the moon and is making required adjustments for its transfer from the lunar orbit back to the terrestrial orbit scheduled for late Tuesday.

The test orbiter will then maneuver on the edge of the Earth's atmosphere to slow from a speed of 11.2 kilometers per second before re-entry, a process that generates extremely high temperatures.

NEOWatcher
2014-Oct-28, 12:19 PM
China keeps surprising me with it's news releases on the latest probe to the moon. The latest news release says the probe will remain in lunar orbit for 32 hours.
It depends on what you are thinking when they say "orbit".

The other wording indicates that they consider being in the moon's gravitational influence as being in orbit. I haven't done the calculations, but 32 hours seems about right for a free return trajectory if they aren't getting any closer than 60000km.

So; Technically, it is an orbit, but it's not a full orbit (as in "completing a lap").

selvaarchi
2014-Oct-28, 02:28 PM
It depends on what you are thinking when they say "orbit".

The other wording indicates that they consider being in the moon's gravitational influence as being in orbit. I haven't done the calculations, but 32 hours seems about right for a free return trajectory if they aren't getting any closer than 60000km.

So; Technically, it is an orbit, but it's not a full orbit (as in "completing a lap").
Ok, I was wrong as I interpreted 32 hours as being more than one orbit round the moon.

NEOWatcher
2014-Oct-28, 03:20 PM
Here's another way to picture it without getting precise numbers (if it helps)...
A Geosynchronous orbit is about 37000km from Earth. (a bit less than 24 hours).

So, with a larger orbit, and a smaller mass to orbit around, it's going to take longer.

If they didn't give the distance, I would have wondered what they were doing too.

NEOWatcher
2014-Oct-28, 05:44 PM
BTW:
Fraser has this story (http://www.universetoday.com/115750/chinas-lunar-test-spacecraft-takes-incredible-picture-of-earth-and-moon-together/) today too. He's got pictures too.
Of particular interest is the shot of the entire moon with the entire Earth in the background.

selvaarchi
2014-Oct-29, 10:34 AM
Here's another way to picture it without getting precise numbers (if it helps)...
A Geosynchronous orbit is about 37000km from Earth. (a bit less than 24 hours).

So, with a larger orbit, and a smaller mass to orbit around, it's going to take longer.

If they didn't give the distance, I would have wondered what they were doing too.
Thanks NEOWatcher. Pictures Fraser pointed to are also available on "China Space " Facebook page.

selvaarchi
2014-Oct-30, 08:30 AM
The no name probe will be back in 2 days (1st November )

http://news.xinhuanet.com/english/photo/2014-10/29/c_133751151_3.htm

. The lunar orbiter is expected to fly back to the earth on Nov. 1, after flying away the Moon's gravitational sphere of influence and transferring to terrestrial orbit,

selvaarchi
2014-Nov-01, 09:20 AM
China is now the 3rd country to send a probe around the moon and return it safely to earth. They are doing it 45 years later than the US and Russia. Still it is something not done for over 45 years. Congratulations China and best wishes for your sample return mission.

http://www.spacedaily.com/m/reports/China_completes_first_mission_to_moon_and_back_999 .html

China completed its first return mission to the moon early Saturday with the successful re-entry and landing of an unmanned probe, state media reported, in the latest step forward for Beijing's ambitious space programme.

The probe landed safely in northern China's Inner Mongolia region, state news agency Xinhua said, citing the Beijing Aerospace Control Center.

Squink
2014-Nov-01, 05:37 PM
Chang'e 5 T1 rounds the lunar farside, returns lovely photo of Earth and the Moon together (http://www.planetary.org/blogs/emily-lakdawalla/2014/10280900-change-5-t1-rounds-the-lunar.html)

publiusr
2014-Nov-01, 08:10 PM
I am looking forward to more on the development of the CZ-9 myself.

selvaarchi
2014-Nov-02, 02:31 AM
The just returned lunar probe has been nicknamed "Xiaofei" on Chinese social networks.

http://news.xinhuanet.com/english/china/2014-11/01/c_133757831.htm

Launched Friday last week, the orbiter traversed 840,000 kilometers on its eight-day mission that saw it round the far side of the Moon and take some incredible pictures of Earth and Moon together.

The re-entry process began at around 6:13 a.m. Saturday morning, with the orbiter approaching Earth at a velocity of about 11.2 kilometers per second.

The high speed led to hefty friction between the orbiter and air and high temperatures on the craft's exterior, generating an ion sheath that cut off contact between ground command and the orbiter.

To help it slow down, the craft is designed to "bounce" off the edge of the atmosphere, before re-entering again. The process has been compared to a stone skipping across water, and can shorten the "braking distance" for the orbiter, according to Zhou Jianliang, chief engineer with the Beijing Aerospace Command and Control Center.

"Really, this is like braking a car," said Zhou, "The faster you drive, the longer the distance you need to bring the car to a complete stop."

selvaarchi
2014-Nov-02, 11:31 AM
Dr Morris Jones and the successful return of China's first circumlunar spacecraft.

http://www.spacedaily.com/reports/Chinas_First_Lunar_Return_Mission_A_Stunning_Succe ss_999.html


The landing of the capsule marks the end of the main goals of this mission, and that alone is enough to make the entire flight worthwhile. But the mission continues. The boxy spacecraft "bus" that carried the capsule to the Moon and back is still functioning.

It's in a highly elongated Earth orbit, awaiting further tasks. Exactly what China plans to do with it remains to be seen. The spacecraft could be used to explore the particles and fields environment of cislunar space, as the Earth's magnetic field gradually diminishes with distance.

It could also be sent to explore some of the Lagrangian points in the Earth-Moon system. These are five imaginary points in space where the gravitational points of these two worlds are in equilibrium, and some of them can serve as "anchor points" for orbiting spacecraft.

These areas have barely been explored by spacecraft, and they should be investigated further for any debris that could be lurking in these places. Alternatively, China could send the spacecraft on a series of tricky gravity-assist maneuvers to gain free energy from the Moon, changing its trajectory. Such moves could lead to more spacecraft making complex but fuel-efficient flights to the Moon in the future. This analyst does not believe that the spacecraft will be sent on any interplanetary trajectories.

NEOWatcher
2014-Nov-03, 02:05 PM
Chang'e 5 T1 rounds the lunar farside, returns lovely photo of Earth and the Moon together (http://www.planetary.org/blogs/emily-lakdawalla/2014/10280900-change-5-t1-rounds-the-lunar.html)
Same pictures I linked to a few days ago here (http://cosmoquest.org/forum/showthread.php?152582-China-s-moon-exploration-ambitions&p=2251512#post2251512).

NEOWatcher
2014-Nov-03, 02:08 PM
The just returned lunar probe has been nicknamed "Xiaofei" on Chinese social networks.

http://news.xinhuanet.com/english/china/2014-11/01/c_133757831.htm

That article is almost word for word the same as your previous link.
You should have mentioned that the difference is that this one actually has a picture of the landed craft.

selvaarchi
2014-Nov-03, 02:43 PM
I was more interested in the nickname that the Chinese social networks were using.

NEOWatcher
2014-Nov-03, 02:55 PM
I was more interested in the nickname that the Chinese social networks were using.
Both articles mentioned it, but neither explained it.
I looked it up, and only found references to an athlete. Do you have any clue about the connection?

selvaarchi
2014-Nov-03, 03:04 PM
Both articles mentioned it, but neither explained it.
I looked it up, and only found references to an athlete. Do you have any clue about the connection?
No I do not but will ask my Malaysian Chinese friends. The second article you are referring to is by Dr Jones and there it was his speculation on what China would do with the "bus" that brought the probe back to earth

publiusr
2014-Nov-03, 06:56 PM
Dr Morris Jones and the successful return of China's first circumlunar spacecraft.

http://www.spacedaily.com/reports/Chinas_First_Lunar_Return_Mission_A_Stunning_Succe ss_999.html

Maybe not true interplanetary flight--but having a sat that is on the ready to do gravity assist might be useful in case we have a NEO, and get a chance to have this craft un across it.

selvaarchi
2014-Nov-04, 03:16 AM
Both articles mentioned it, but neither explained it.
I looked it up, and only found references to an athlete. Do you have any clue about the connection?
This was one interpretation that I got -

Xiao means small
fei means something that flies

selvaarchi
2014-Nov-06, 07:09 AM
While all eyes were on the return capsule to earth, China had other plans for Chang'e 5 Service Module. See 1st link below. To top that information was released that Chang'e 4 might still fly - see 2nd link below.

http://www.spaceflight101.com/change-5-test-mission-updates.html

Following Friday's successful re-entry and landing of the Chang'e 5 Return Vehicle that was part of the Chang'e 5 Test Mission, Chinese officials have confirmed that the craft's Service Module was successful in positioning itself for an unprecedented secondary mission. The Service Module is planned to operate until at least May 2015 with a twofold mission at the Earth-Moon Lagrange Point 2 and in lunar orbit.

http://www.go-taikonauts.com/en/chinese-space-news/975-correction-chang-e-5-t1-is-not-chang-e-4

The Chang'e 4 spacecraft is still sitting in a clean room and is waiting for a decision for its destination. Possible options are a repetition of the Chang'e 3 mission but it may also turn out that China will surprise the world again, like it happened occasionally before ...

NEOWatcher
2014-Nov-06, 01:05 PM
While all eyes were on the return capsule to earth, China had other plans for Chang'e 5 Service Module. See 1st link below.
So; in summary:
The service module somewhat tailed the return module and returned to the moon to put it in an L2 orbit.
The 3rd stage is in a very high orbit testing radio signals.
The service module is testing various maneuvers because it still has about 80% of it's fuel remaining.

Of course, the secrecy continues.
Nobody knows if there are any experiments on the SM.
Nobody knows how much fuel mass will have to be replaced by other hardware (like the lander and such)

Basically, they packed a lot of hardware and navigation testing in this mission.



To top that information was released that Chang'e 4 might still fly - see 2nd link below.
That article says nothing we haven't discussed before. We already know it hasn't been used in whole or in part yet. We still don't know what they are going to do with it.

selvaarchi
2014-Nov-06, 01:36 PM
I thought the service module only released the return module after the 1st dip into earth's atmosphere? Other than that I agree with your summary.

NEOWatcher
2014-Nov-06, 01:52 PM
I thought the service module only released the return module after the 1st dip into earth's atmosphere? Other than that I agree with your summary.
I never stated how much, but on verification, It was later than I thought. Still before re-entry though. If it was first skip, then it would have had a lot of shielding. (The first skip would need shed about 3.5km/s to bring it into a nearly circular orbit. I don't know what the apogee was after the skip.)

Plus; slowing it down would require a second orbit for it to do it's return trajectory burn at perigee.


For that, the Service Module delivered the Return Vehicle on its final re-entry trajectory, releasing it at a distance of 5,000 Kilometers, just over 20 minutes prior to re-entry.

selvaarchi
2014-Nov-06, 02:11 PM
You are right, I miss read that.

Hopefully the go-taikonauts team will give us some insight at the end of the month.

NEOWatcher
2014-Nov-06, 02:51 PM
Hopefully the go-taikonauts team will give us some insight at the end of the month.
I hope they have more than insight. I'd like to see actual information.

selvaarchi
2014-Nov-15, 04:05 PM
So; in summary:
The service module somewhat tailed the return module and returned to the moon to put it in an L2 orbit.
The 3rd stage is in a very high orbit testing radio signals.
The service module is testing various maneuvers because it still has about 80% of it's fuel remaining.

Of course, the secrecy continues.
Nobody knows if there are any experiments on the SM.
Nobody knows how much fuel mass will have to be replaced by other hardware (like the lander and such)

Basically, they packed a lot of hardware and navigation testing in this mission.



That article says nothing we haven't discussed before. We already know it hasn't been used in whole or in part yet. We still don't know what they are going to do with it.
If the service module still has 80% of its fuel left after returning to earth orbit then in theory it could do another 4 round trips to the moon. Useful to have that capability if we need to ferry several loads to moon orbit. Could that be the approach they might take for the Chang'e 5 mission and later for their manned missions?

selvaarchi
2014-Nov-16, 04:00 PM
Emily Lakdawalla speculating why China might want to send the service module to L2 point.

http://www.planetary.org/blogs/emily-lakdawalla/2014/11031013-change-5-test-vehicle-flying.html


We do not yet know where they plan to send the Chang'e 4 or Chang'e 5 landers. (We don't even know if the spacecraft known as Chang'e 4 will even launch at all.) But if you'll allow me to indulge in a little bit of speculation, I can think of one excellent reason to have a lunar orbiter in place when you are planning future landed missions. With an orbiter, you could conceivably land something in a place you cannot see from Earth -- namely, the lunar farside. I can point you (thanks to a tip posted here) to a Chinese discussion forum where other people are speculating about the same thing -- if not for Chang'e 4 or 5, possibly even for Chang'e 6, the presumed backup to Chang'e 5. But that's pretty far in the future, and, admittedly, a long chain of speculation.

Why would a landing on, or sample return from, the farside be so cool? A large fraction of the farside is swallowed up in the South Pole-Aitken Basin, one of the biggest impact basins in the solar system. To the extent that a group of scientists ever agrees on anything, a sizeable fraction of lunar scientists would love to land in the South Pole-Aitken Basin. As one of the biggest holes in the solar system, it likely excavated lunar mantle; so there'd be the chance to see what rocks from deep inside a terrestrial planet look like (and, more importantly, what they are made of). It's also very, very far from the Imbrium impact basin, whose ejecta reached pretty much the entire nearside, possibly affecting all the Apollo samples.

NEOWatcher
2014-Nov-16, 10:54 PM
If the service module still has 80% of its fuel left after returning to earth orbit then in theory it could do another 4 round trips to the moon. Useful to have that capability if we need to ferry several loads to moon orbit. Could that be the approach they might take for the Chang'e 5 mission and later for their manned missions?
No; that would only be possible without any loads. Don't forget, this test run did not have a lander or rover as a payload.

We just had an orbiter and return module on this mission. These are not relatively mass intensive components.
Now; for 5, we have to add the lander, rover and ascent module. Fuel to land all of those including the fuel for the ascent.
That's going to pretty much eliminate that 80% reserve.

selvaarchi
2014-Nov-16, 11:45 PM
No; that would only be possible without any loads. Don't forget, this test run did not have a lander or rover as a payload.

We just had an orbiter and return module on this mission. These are not relatively mass intensive components.
Now; for 5, we have to add the lander, rover and ascent module. Fuel to land all of those including the fuel for the ascent.
That's going to pretty much eliminate that 80% reserve.

I was thinking more in terms of it not landing but just transporting the items from LEO to moon orbit and then picking up the ascent module and bringing it back to earth.

NEOWatcher
2014-Nov-17, 12:11 AM
I was thinking more in terms of it not landing but just transporting the items from LEO to moon orbit and then picking up the ascent module and bringing it back to earth.
It's easier just to send stuff rather than rendezvous. The advantage for something with that much fuel reserve would be better suited for traveling different orbits or destinations with instruments that would be used at each site.

selvaarchi
2014-Nov-20, 06:04 AM
Picture of the Chang'e 5 lander and another of the flight path on China space Facebook

https://www.facebook.com/ChinaSpace

selvaarchi
2014-Nov-27, 09:38 AM
A concept image of Chang'e 5 taking off from the moon.

https://www.facebook.com/ChinaSpace/photos/a.815691448491858.1073741949.237730352954640/817487424978927/?type=1&theater

selvaarchi
2014-Nov-27, 09:40 AM
A concept image of Chang'e 5 taking off from the moon.

https://www.facebook.com/ChinaSpace/photos/a.815691448491858.1073741949.237730352954640/817487424978927/?type=1&theater

selvaarchi
2014-Nov-29, 07:08 AM
The service module belonging to China's unmanned lunar orbiter has reached the Earth-Moon second Lagrange Point (L2), the State Administration of Science, Technology and Industry for National Defense said Saturday.

They do talk off all experiments going well but no information on what experiments.

http://news.xinhuanet.com/english/china/2014-11/29/c_133822047.htm


As of Friday, the service module had been flying for 28 days, and was 421,000 kilometers away from Earth and 63,000 km from the moon. All experiments are going well.

selvaarchi
2014-Nov-30, 01:31 PM
After all our complaints of how the Chinese have been keeping a tight lid on their Cheng'e 3 mission, :rimshot: we will have information coming out of our years. :D In fact a special issue of "Research in Astronomy and Astrophysics" has been dedicated to the early results from China’s Chang’e 3 lander mission to the Moon.

http://www.leonarddavid.com/chinas-first-moon-lander-early-science-results-reported/


In the journal, an array of scientists from the Laboratory of Lunar and Deep Space Exploration, National Astronomical Observatories, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing, present initial findings from the lander and its lunar rover, Yutu.

According to the papers, an analysis of the effect of the CE-3 engine plume on the lunar surface was done by comparing images before and after the touchdown using data from the craft’s landing camera.

For example, during the landing process of CE-3, lots of lunar dust was blown away by the engine plume. Furthermore, the scope of influence is about 60 meters from east to west and 135 meters from south to north. “Thus, this leads to a redistribution of lunar dust and changes in space weathering on the lunar surface,” one of the research papers notes.

The landing site of CE-3 was found to be a high titanium basalt stratum, and its geological age is young Eratoshenian – the longest period of the lunar timescale, thought to range from about 3.2 to 1.1 billion years old.

For a look at the full range of papers

http://www.raa-journal.org/raa/index.php/raa/issue/view/81

selvaarchi
2014-Dec-05, 11:31 AM
Emily Lakdawalla's speculation could have hit the bull's eye. My speculation on this is from the latest flight path for the service module and their caption that goes with it. Notice how the service keeps circling the Earth-Moon Lagrange point L2. In other words Cheng'e 5 will be landing on the part of the moon we cannot see from earth.


https://www.facebook.com/ChinaSpace/photos/a.766140943446909.1073741931.237730352954640/823307567730246/?type=1&theater


Moon return test mission flight path. The service module will now observe the lunar sampling area for Chang'e 5

NEOWatcher
2014-Dec-05, 03:30 PM
Emily Lakdawalla's speculation could have hit the bull's eye. My speculation on this is from the latest flight path for the service module and their caption that goes with it. Notice how the service keeps circling the Earth-Moon Lagrange point L2. In other words Cheng'e 5 will be landing on the part of the moon we cannot see from earth.
Your speculation was using it as a tug. Emily is talking about using it as a far side observation post.

selvaarchi
2014-Dec-05, 04:34 PM
Your speculation was using it as a tug. Emily is talking about using it as a far side observation post.

I am now agreeing with her initial speculation.

selvaarchi
2014-Dec-05, 10:15 PM
Some news on the service module and some future plans, including leaving L2 in January 2015.

I must say, I am impressed with the sort of detail, the Chinese are going about their moon exploration. Very surprised at the amount of extra tasks they have given the service module. If it is going to go that close to the moon in January, it will be to take close up pictures of the possible landing sites. I wonder how they are going to use the GPS system?

http://www.ecns.cn/2014/12-03/145158.shtml


"To take maximum advantage of the capacity of the service module to test relevant technologies for Chang'e 5, we are conducting a series of experiments on the service module, including circling the Lagrangian Point L2 and carrying equipment for experiments in orbit," said Pei Zhaoyu, deputy director of the China National Space Administration.

The module carries equipment including GPS, a high-resolution camera and a star sensor.

Pei said the test could validate technologies for Chang'e 5.

The camera, which boasts double normal resolution, can observe areas where Chang'e 5 will take samples. "These possible results can strengthen our confidence for Chang'e 5's landing," Pei said.

The service module is scheduled to leave L2 at the beginning of January and head to the moon. It will prepare for braking at peri-lune - the point at which an orbiting object is nearest the moon - and enter the moon's orbit in mid-January.

selvaarchi
2014-Dec-15, 02:18 AM
Yesterday 14/12/2014 marked the 1st anniversary of the landing of Chang'e 3 with Yutu on the moon. Right now the status of the crafts are not known.

http://www.spaceflight101.com/change-3-mission-updates.html


China is celebrating the one-year anniversary of the landing of the Chang'e 3 lander and rover on the Moon, however, the fate of the two craft is uncertain as no radio communications from either was detected in recent months. Making its descent to the lunar surface on December 14, 2013, Chang'e 3 became the first craft to make a soft landing on the Moon since the Soviet Luna 24 in 1976.

The landing of Chang'e 3 was no easy feat - the craft used one continuous 12-minute engine burn to make its way from a low orbit around the Moon to a landing site located in the Sea of Rains, employing Autonomous Hazard Avoidance in a fully automated landing sequence that saw the lander hovering at a point four meters above the surface before dropping the final meters in free fall. Coming to rest on its four landing legs, Chang'e 3 concluded its "12 Minutes of Terror" and also set another mark in China's lunar program.

selvaarchi
2014-Dec-22, 04:01 PM
Dr.Paul D. Spudis take on Chinese Luna ambitions (more like a wake up call to the US).

http://www.airspacemag.com/daily-planet/china-now-positioned-dominate-moon-180953267/


It appears that while America continues to pursue the chimera of a human Mars mission at some future (but always unspecified) date, China is moving ahead with cislunar space dominance. They have systematically and carefully planned a logical pathway to the creation of a permanent space-faring capability. They have not yet achieved it, but looking at their progress to date, there is little doubt that they will. As virtually all of our space “applications” (i.e., communications, weather, remote sensing, GPS) assets are positioned in the various locales of cislunar space, we should be cognizant of evolving Chinese capabilities and intentions. Are we allowing ourselves to be outmaneuvered in space? Despite the happy talk of many in the space community, it remains a dangerous world.

NEOWatcher
2014-Dec-22, 05:55 PM
(more like a wake up call to the US).
Nothing that anyone doesn't know, and I'm sure the government is already making the same speculations.

The issue will be if they can support both a manned space station and a manned lunar lander. They probably can but according to the first sentence you quoted, they haven't had any statements to the fact that they will be doing a human landing on the moon either. So far, everything has been based on speculation, rumor, and inferred technology.

Besides, the US has much more ambitious plans. Why should they spread their resources just to match a moon landing? We've been there, done that. A moon landing might help in many ways, but to say the Chinese will get there is not a reason. There is no "outmaneuvering".

That whole diatribe of "taking hostile action in space" means nothing. We already know that. Further than Earth orbit, it means practically nothing. How would they define BEO assets themselves? How would they use them in a military sense? Sure, there are possibilities of token take downs of other satellites, but those have serious political consequences here on Earth. I doubt anyone would use such expensive resources to take potshots at anyone in outer space (at least until there is a robust infrastructure)

This is just another article with some alarmist using the disparity of goals to use one goal as an argument.

The biggest issue with space technology is the terrestrial applications of it. I think there's no doubt that they already have what they need. If anyone needs to concentrate on anything, that would be the focus. Not the moon.

They have a robust space program. There's no need to taint it with alarmist talk.

selvaarchi
2014-Dec-22, 11:08 PM
Nothing that anyone doesn't know, and I'm sure the government is already making the same speculations.

The issue will be if they can support both a manned space station and a manned lunar lander. They probably can but according to the first sentence you quoted, they haven't had any statements to the fact that they will be doing a human landing on the moon either. So far, everything has been based on speculation, rumor, and inferred technology.

Besides, the US has much more ambitious plans. Why should they spread their resources just to match a moon landing? We've been there, done that. A moon landing might help in many ways, but to say the Chinese will get there is not a reason. There is no "outmaneuvering".

That whole diatribe of "taking hostile action in space" means nothing. We already know that. Further than Earth orbit, it means practically nothing. How would they define BEO assets themselves? How would they use them in a military sense? Sure, there are possibilities of token take downs of other satellites, but those have serious political consequences here on Earth. I doubt anyone would use such expensive resources to take potshots at anyone in outer space (at least until there is a robust infrastructure)

This is just another article with some alarmist using the disparity of goals to use one goal as an argument.

The biggest issue with space technology is the terrestrial applications of it. I think there's no doubt that they already have what they need. If anyone needs to concentrate on anything, that would be the focus. Not the moon.

They have a robust space program. There's no need to taint it with alarmist talk.

Dr.Paul D. Spudis is a known advocate of the US going to the moon (just like we have another speaker who advocates going to Mars). He is just trying to goad the US government by stressing on China's progress.

NEOWatcher
2014-Dec-23, 01:25 AM
Dr.Paul D. Spudis is a known advocate of the US going to the moon (just like we have another speaker who advocates going to Mars). He is just trying to goad the US government by stressing on China's progress.
So; he's just pushing his own agenda. I'd rather see benefits of the moon over other projects that are being undertaken... not scare tactics.

For one; with all the talk about asteroid threats, it seems logical that there is an immediate need to study them. That's what NASA is doing.

Launch window
2014-Dec-24, 01:00 PM
Some interesting articles


http://news.xinhuanet.com/english/china/2014-12/07/c_133838367.htm


(Xinhua) -- China hopes to put a rover on Mars around 2020, complete a manned space station around 2022 and test a heavy carrier rocket around 2030, a top space scientist revealed Sunday.

Lei Fanpei, chairman of the China Aerospace Science and Technology Corporation (CASC), the main contractor for the space program, revealed the details in an interview with Xinhua after the launch of CBERS-4, a satellite jointly developed with Brazil, from the Taiyuan base, by a Long March-4B rocket.

It was the 200th flight of the Long March variants since April 1970 when a Long March-1 carried China's first satellite, Dongfanghong-1, into space.

MARS PROBE 2020

A feasibility study on the country's first Mars mission is completed and the goal is now to send an orbiter and rover to Mars.

There has been no official announcement about a Mars probe yet, but Lei expects a Long March-5 carrier, still at the development stage, to take the orbiter into a Martian orbit around 2020 from a new launch site on south China's island province of Hainan.

China's space scientists have had their eyes on the Red Planet as their next destination since the successful soft landing on the moon late last year.

Last month, an actual-size model of a possible Mars rover was on display at Airshow China 2014, the first glimpse of how the vehicle might turn out.

China made an unsuccessful attempt to reach Mars in 2011 aboard a Russian rocket, but failed to complete the mission because of an accident during orbital transfer.

SPACE STATION 2022

China's manned space station program is progressing steadily. Various modules, vehicles and ground facilities are nearing readiness.

Development and manufacture of major space products are at key stages, including the second space lab Tiangong-2, the Tianzhou-1 cargo ship, Long March-7 rockets and Shenzhou-11 spacecraft. The core module and two space labs will be tested soon, Lei said.

A new launch center in Hainan, the fourth after Taiyuan, Jiuquan and Xichang, is almost complete and can already launch some spacecraft.

The Tiangong-2 space lab will be launched around 2016 along with the Shenzhou-11 spacecraft and Tianzhou-1 cargo ship. Around 2018, a core experimental module for the station will be put in place.

By around 2022, China's first orbiting space station should be completed. It will consist of three parts -- a core module attached to two labs, each weighing about 20 tonnes.

Tiangong-1 was launched in September 2011. In June 2012, the Shenzhou-9 executed the first manual space docking with Tiangong-1, another essential step in building a space station.

HEAVY ROCKET

A powerful carrier rocket is essential for a manned moon landing.

"We hope to make breakthroughs within four or five years on design and key technology for the heavy carrier, a solid foundation for developing such a rocket," he said.
http://uk.businessinsider.com/china-probe-on-asteroid-apophis-2014-11?r=US

China is reportedly considering trying to land a probe on asteroid Apophis when it makes a crucial swing past the Earth in 2029.

Apophis is a controversial topic for astronomers and skywatchers in general.

When it was originally identified as a threat in December 2004, NASA put the chance of the 325m wide rock hitting the Earth in 2029 at 1 in 62, causing widespread media coverage about the new “Doomsday Asteroid”.

Within a week, the chance of a 2029 strike was eliminated and focus shifted on its chances of passing through a gravitational “keyhole”, which would pull it into a collision path with the Earth seven years later.

The worst case scenario for that to happen was a 1 in 5560 chance in 2036.

That’s now blown out to 7.07 in a billion as more information is gathered on the asteroid, but there’s still plenty of excitement about the 2029 pass which many hope will provide final clarification of the odds of a strike by 2100.

Read more: http://uk.businessinsider.com/

http://www.msn.com/en-us/news/technology/china-researchers-plan-mars-mission-around-2020/ar-BBepANf

Chinese scientists are planning to launch a Mars rover "around 2020", state media reported on Tuesday, as the country pours billions into its space programme and works to catch up with the US and Europe.
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/asia/china/11279450/China-develops-new-rocket-for-manned-moon-mission.html

China is developing a huge rocket that will be used for its first manned mission to the moon, state media said Monday, underscoring Beijing's increasingly ambitious space programme.

It will carry a load of 130 tonnes, the newspaper added, equal to what NASA is aiming for with its Space Launch System (SLS), which aims to blast off for the first time in 2018 with an initial test payload of 70 tonnes.
http://www.spacepolitics.com/2013/10/05/conflicting-claims-about-china-nasa-and-cooperation/

Conflicting claims about China, NASA, and cooperation
One obstacle to that cooperation, though, is law that has been in place for over two years prohibiting NASA (along with the Office of Science and Technology Policy) from using any funds for bilateral programs with China or to host Chinese nationals at NASA facilities. That language was added to the full-year continuing resolution that funded NASA for FY 2011. There was similar language in the FY 2012 appropriations bill that funded NASA, preventing the use of funds for cooperation with China and hosting Chinese nationals at NASA facilities, although that bill included a clause allowing exceptions when NASA certifies, and notifies Congress at least 14 days in advance, that there is no risk of technology transfer. That language was included in the continuing resolution for FY 2013, with the addition of a provision that any exception must demonstrate that any such interactions will not involve Chinese individuals known “to have direct involvement with violations of human rights,” and requiring at least least 30 days advance notice to Congress.

selvaarchi
2015-Jan-05, 11:32 AM
Some news on the service module and some future plans, including leaving L2 in January 2015.

I must say, I am impressed with the sort of detail, the Chinese are going about their moon exploration. Very surprised at the amount of extra tasks they have given the service module. If it is going to go that close to the moon in January, it will be to take close up pictures of the possible landing sites. I wonder how they are going to use the GPS system?

http://www.ecns.cn/2014/12-03/145158.shtml

The service module left L2 yesterday (Sunday) and is now set to circle the moon. No details on what it will do there other then to support the Chang'e 5 mission.

http://news.xinhuanet.com/english/china/2015-01/05/c_133898173.htm


The service module of China's unmanned lunar orbiter is scheduled to return to the moon's orbit in mid-January for more tests to prepare for the country's next lunar probe mission, Chang'e-5.

On Sunday, the service module left the Earth-Moon second Lagrange Point (L2) after circling the point while performing additional tests, the State Administration of Science, Technology and Industry for National Defense (SASTIND) said Monday.

A lunar orbiter is a spacecraft that orbits the moon, and its service module contains support systems used for spacecraft operations.

"It was the first time for a Chinese spacecraft to reach the L2 point, and the service module completed three circles around the point, expanding probe missions," said Zhao Wenbo, vice director of SASTIND's lunar probe and space project center.

selvaarchi
2015-Jan-06, 10:31 AM
China’s Moon exploration community has been saluting the anniversary of its Chang’e 3 lunar lander that touched down on December 14, 2013. Unfortunately the captions that go with the pictures are in Chinese, but enjoy, the pictures are worth a thousand words each.

http://moon.bao.ac.cn/multimedia/img2dce3.jsp

selvaarchi
2015-Jan-06, 11:22 AM
There has been a lot of speculation if the moon lander is still active with reports there have been no signals detected from it. Parish the thoughts, China just released a photo taken by it on December 2nd 2014.

http://www.leonarddavid.com/china-moon-lander-images-galaxy/


China’s Chang’e-3 lunar lander remains operational, in evidence by a newly distributed image taken by the spacecraft from the Moon’s surface.

According to the informative Lunar Enterprise Daily, the Chinese lander made the first observation of a galaxy from its landing site: M101 Spiral. [SEE NOTE BELOW]

The lander’s Lunar Ultraviolet Telescope (LUT) made the observation on December 2.

selvaarchi
2015-Jan-12, 11:53 AM
The service module has now entered Lunar orbit. It will take another two days before it gets into it's final orbit to do it's survey.

http://news.xinhuanet.com/english/china/2015-01/11/c_133911197.htm

The module will make its second and third braking in the early hours of Jan. 12 and 13 respectively to enable it to enter the target 127-minute orbit for tests to prepare for the next lunar probe mission, Chang'e-5, said center's chief engineer Zhou Jianliang

selvaarchi
2015-Jan-14, 03:30 PM
It is now confirmed the service module has entered its desired orbit to start it's support activities to for Chang'e-5, ( wish the Chinese would say exactly what the support activities are)

http://news.xinhuanet.com/english/china/2015-01/13/c_133915882.htm


The service module of China's unmanned test lunar orbiter entered a 127-minute orbit on Tuesday after three orbital transfers since Sunday.

To decelerate the craft enough for it enter its target orbit, the service module conducted three braking maneuvers on Sunday, Monday and Tuesday, the State Administration of Science, Technology and Industry for National Defense (SASTIND) announced.

"After the circular flight stabilizes, the module will travel along the current orbit at an altitude of 200 km above the moon's surface for tests to validate key technologies for the next lunar probe mission, Chang'e-5," said Zhao Wenbo, vice director of SASTIND's lunar probe and space project center.

NEOWatcher
2015-Jan-14, 03:47 PM
It is now confirmed the service module has entered its desired orbit to start it's support activities to for Chang'e-5, ( wish the Chinese would say exactly what the support activities are)
I'm not sure how they are using the word "support". I suspect that it's more that the support is more of testing of some of the technology that will be used, and scouting of the moon for places to land.
Since it's no longer at L2 and they are talking about enough fuel to remain there (instead of return to L2), it sounds unlikely that it will be used as an observation post.

If I had to speculate, the point of L2 is to test a rendezvous point for the sample return to connect to a Earth injection "tug".

selvaarchi
2015-Jan-17, 03:54 PM
The Chinese Chang’e 3 lunar lander has officially surpassed its planned life time of one year. Let us hope it's next rover will meet and exceed what Yutu achieved.

http://www.spaceflight101.com/change-3-mission-updates.html


The craft remains operational and entered its 14th hibernation period this week as the sun set at the landing site inside Mare Imbrium where Chang’e 3 landed on December 14, 2013, releasing the Yutu rover that was planned to operate for a three-month mission.

In a brief statement issued by the State Administration for Science, Technology and Industry for National Defense (SASTIND) it was confirmed that the Chang’e 3 spacecraft entered its 14th lunar night on January 14. Updates on the mission’s progress and the status of the spacecraft were not available for most of 2014 and signals from Chang’e 3 that could be tracked by amateur observers on Earth were no longer to be found.

Last month, the Chang’e 3 lander celebrated its first anniversary on the lunar surface, surpassing its design life with both of its instruments still functioning well. The lander is equipped with a Lunar-based Ultraviolet Telescope and an Extreme UV Camera. The UV Telescope was designed to acquire imagery of galaxies, binary stars, active galactic nuclei and bright stars. A lunar-based telescope does not have to battle the effects of the atmosphere that are often the limiting factors for scientific observations of ground-based observatories.

selvaarchi
2015-Jan-17, 05:41 PM
Another set of photos showing the different the moon phases as it orbits earth. The photos were taken by the service module as it circled Lagrangian Point 2.

http://gbtimes.com/china/chinas-lunar-probe-shows-moon-orbiting-earth


China has released a stunning new image from it's recent lunar mission, showing the Moon in different phases as it orbits around the Earth.

The multiple exposure picture was taken by the service module of the Chang'e 5-T1 mission, from a stable orbit at the second Langrangian Point (also known as L2), on the far side of the Earth in respect to the Sun.

The shot is just the latest in a series of astonishing images that have emerged from the mission, giving wonderful perspectives of the Moon as our nearest neighbour in space. In October, the spacecraft sent back a shot of the Earth and Moon together while slinging around the far side of our celestial partner.

selvaarchi
2015-Feb-08, 11:14 AM
The service module carries out orbiting technologies needed in a future sampling mission on the Moon according to the latest news release from China. They do not explain what exactly they did test. Only time will tell.

http://news.xinhuanet.com/english/china/2015-02/08/c_133978153.htm


The orbiter conducted three times of tests between Friday and Saturday to modulate the speed, height and orbit in a simulative moon sampling mission, according to a statement of the State Administration of Science, Technology and Industry for National Defense on Sunday.

Such technologies will possibly be used in the country's next lunar probe mission, Chang'e-5.

NEOWatcher
2015-Feb-08, 02:34 PM
Yep; pretty close to what I suspected. Testing of rendezvous and injection.

selvaarchi
2015-Feb-11, 01:12 PM
Yep; pretty close to what I suspected. Testing of rendezvous and injection.

Leonard David seems to agree with you. He puts it as "Experience gained during the service module’s flight is intended to sharpen the skills of ground controllers to undertake a lunar sample mission projected for 2017."

http://www.leonarddavid.com/china-lunar-orbiter-assess-return-sample-tactics/


China’s “service module” that is orbiting the Moon has conducted a series of tests – all in prelude to a robotic lunar sample mission eyed for 2017.

According to a statement of the State Administration of Science, Technology and Industry for National Defense (SASTIND), the orbiter modulated its speed, height, and overall orbit around the Moon.

Those tests were completed February 6-7, SASTIND reported.

selvaarchi
2015-Feb-26, 09:09 AM
China is taking steps to be in continuous contact with their probes to the moon, at least the earth facing side.

They are spending US300 million to build a satellite tracking station in Argentina. Their first outside China.

http://m.scmp.com/news/china/article/1723747/china-gets-approval-build-argentina-satellite-tracking-station-help

President Cristina Fernandez’s government has said the project is part of China’s plans to reach the moon in 2020.

The satellite station under construction in southern Neuquen province is China’s first outside the country for its space exploration programme.

It will be used for monitoring and downloading data through an antenna with a 35-metre diameter.

It is expected to cost US$300 million and will be operational next year.

selvaarchi
2015-Mar-07, 03:40 PM
China says "it has no plan to land its astronauts on the moon for the time being". I think the phrase "time being" is important as all predictions of a Chinese moon landing is at least 10 years away.

http://news.xinhuanet.com/english/2015-03/07/c_134046127.htm


Zhou, a member of the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference National Committee, the country's top political advisory body, also said that challenges and a lot of preparation precede the realization of the manned lunar mission.

For example, it requires the research and development of a bigger carrier rocket and the bigger and more sophisticated manned spacecraft, he added.

NEOWatcher
2015-Mar-07, 04:13 PM
China says "it has no plan to land its astronauts on the moon for the time being". I think the phrase "time being" is important as all predictions of a Chinese moon landing is at least 10 years away.
I think of it not in years, but in operations and technologies, although 10 years sounds about right.
T3 is going to be a major undertaking that won't be fully operational until 2022. They will probably use studies from that for further manned flights.
Also, they will probably need the LM11. That's going to take time.

selvaarchi
2015-Mar-08, 08:02 AM
The service module now orbiting the moon is still doing experiments to help the Chang'e 5 mission

http://news.xinhuanet.com/english/2015-03/08/c_134048142.htm

China has ran tests close to the moon simulating an unmanned docking procedure needed in the country's next lunar mission.

The service module of the unmanned lunar orbiter currently in space to trial such techniques entered a target lunar orbit after breaking maneuvers, and flew to a suitable position for orbital docking between Tuesday and Saturday, said the State Administration of Science, Technology and Industry for National Defense (SASTIND) on Sunday.

Liu Jizhong, deputy chief commander of the SASTIND's lunar probe project, said that the service module has proven the reliability of key technology needed for the docking of two spacecraft in the Chang'e-5 mission.

selvaarchi
2015-Mar-10, 02:06 PM
Some information on Cheng'e 5 from spaceflight101. It reckons it will be launched using LM5.

http://www.spaceflight101.com/change-5-test-mission-updates.html

The Chang'e 5 spacecraft consists of four modules - a Service Module, a Return Vehicle, the Lander and the Ascent Vehicle. Overall, the spacecraft will have a launch mass around eight metric tons requiring a larger launch vehicle than previous missions. It is expected that Chang'e 5 and 6 will launch on the Long March 5 rocket that delivers the craft to a direct trajectory to the Moon.

The mission would include new technologies to realize a flight into orbit around the Moon, a propulsive landing on the lunar surface, the robotic acquisition of samples, a propulsive return to orbit of a sample-carrying ascent vehicle, a fully autonomous rendezvous in lunar orbit, the exchange of sample material between spacecraft modules and the successful return of the sample material.

NEOWatcher
2015-Mar-10, 05:39 PM
Some information on Cheng'e 5 from spaceflight101. It reckons it will be launched using LM5.
I would suspect so. Cheng'e 3 (and 5t) didn't have all the equipment for sample return. I would think it would have pushed it over the limit of the LM3 that they used.

But; they don't say when.

(probably better discussion for the LM thread, but...)
LM5s first flight is this or next year, but that could be for the CZ 200 variant which can't reach GTO and has a different core than the rest of the LM5 family. The CZ 200 is a step toward the CZ 300 and 500 variants since they will use the CZ 200 as boosters. That may take some time.

selvaarchi
2015-Mar-13, 12:52 AM
China has got me confused with their latest news release 😕

http://news.xinhuanet.com/english/2015-03/12/c_134062405.htm

- China will launch its Chang'e-4 lunar probe before 2020, the State Administration of Science, Technology and Industry for National Defense (SASTIND) said Thursday.

The probe will conduct technical experiments and collect data.

NEOWatcher
2015-Mar-13, 01:00 AM
China has got me confused with their latest news release 

Confused or just leaving questions?
Since we didn't get much detail in the past, there's not much of a conflict with previous information.

It doesn't say much, but the comments about private investment do leave a lot of questions.

selvaarchi
2015-Mar-31, 03:01 AM
China has released more details of its circumlunar return and reentry spacecraft.

http://www.leonarddavid.com/chinas-circumlunar-mission-new-details/


A technical overview of the circumlunar mission has been published in Science China Technological Sciences. Lead author of the paper is MengFei Yang of the China Academy of Space Technology in Beijing.

The aerodynamic design of China first small skip reentry capsule at hyper speed was verified by the successful reentry and landing, they report.

Seven new kinds of lightweight thermal protection material were developed for the capsule, promoting the development and use of composite material in China.

selvaarchi
2015-May-20, 10:53 PM
China plans to land Chang'e 4 probe on the "dark" side of the moon in 2020 according to Wu Weiren, the group's chief engineer.

http://www.chinatopix.com/articles/51061/20150520/china-plans-spaceprobe-landing-moons-dark-side.htm


China's Lunar Exploration announced that the country has plans for Chang'e 4 probe to make its descent on the moon's "dark side," according to the Chinese Central Television.

Lunar Exploration will probably choose a site where landing is more challenging, said Wu Weiren, the group's chief engineer. He added that the Lunar Exploration's next plan is to send a spacecraft to the dark side of the moon, the report stated.

lpetrich
2015-May-23, 04:39 AM
I presume that they mean the far side of the Moon. They'll need an orbiter to do communications-satellite duties.

NEOWatcher
2015-May-23, 03:38 PM
I presume that they mean the far side of the Moon.
That's why he put it in quotes.


They'll need an orbiter to do communications-satellite duties.
Some of the recent tests and the orbits they used were steps in testing for an L2 orbit of a communication relay.

selvaarchi
2015-May-27, 01:25 PM
This article not only speculates about Chang'e 4 probe aiming for the far side of the Moon but also Chang'e 6 also doing a sample return from the same area.

It also agrees with NEOWatcher about using L2 for communication.

http://gbtimes.com/opinion/china-aiming-far-side-moon


China’s space program, including its crewed spaceflight, space station plans and lunar exploration, has largely followed in the footsteps of the United States and Russia (previously Soviet Union), and as such often China’s exploration efforts are lazily written off as copying these earlier programs and even relying on Russian technology. This is misleading.

Regardless of such claims, these ambitions are extremely technically complex and the achievements impressive and demonstrate domestically developed technologies. One of the core rationales behind the decision for China to commit to and prioritize a comprehensive space program in the late 1970s was to develop capacities and advanced technologies so as to not be left behind by the rest of the world.

Whether or not Chang’e-4 targets the far side of the Moon, China will soon be forging its own path in outer space. A paper published in the Chinese Journal of Space Science outlines plans for intriguing missions such as a sample return to the asteroid Ceres (currently being visited by Nasa’s Dawn probe) sending an orbiter to Jupiter and a Mars sample return. While these are still in the pipeline, China has its eyes set firm on the skies and beyond.

selvaarchi
2015-Aug-13, 01:45 PM
NEOWatcher should be pleased with this information from China.:D It is the first time they have said they will be landing on the far side of the moon and to top it is a proposal for collaboration on “experimental verification for [a] lunar base”.

This was in a presentation submitted to the United Nations Office for Outer Space Affairs. A pdf file of the presentation can be downloaded.

http://gbtimes.com/china/china-unveils-plans-far-side-moon-landing-and-hints-future-lunar-base


The Chinese National Space Administration (CNSA) has outlined its early plans for putting a lander and rover on the far side of the Moon. No country has attempted such a mission before.

A presentation submitted to the United Nations Office for Outer Space Affairs (pdf) states that the robotic mission, currently named Chang’e-4, will launch in 2018 or 2019 and will include a relay satellite.

The paper notes key objectives as performing the ‘first soft landing on the lunar farside in human history’, demonstrating technologies of lunar data relay, landing and roving on complicated terrains of the lunar farside, and lunar night power generation, and a number of scientific goals.

The project will be open to cooperation with other countries and organisations, at the mission level, regarding equipment used, and telemetry, communication and data.

selvaarchi
2015-Aug-18, 08:53 AM
Some information on Cheng'e 5 from spaceflight101. It reckons it will be launched using LM5.

http://www.spaceflight101.com/change-5-test-mission-updates.html

The Chang'e 5 spacecraft consists of four modules - a Service Module, a Return Vehicle, the Lander and the Ascent Vehicle. Overall, the spacecraft will have a launch mass around eight metric tons requiring a larger launch vehicle than previous missions. It is expected that Chang'e 5 and 6 will launch on the Long March 5 rocket that delivers the craft to a direct trajectory to the Moon.

The mission would include new technologies to realize a flight into orbit around the Moon, a propulsive landing on the lunar surface, the robotic acquisition of samples, a propulsive return to orbit of a sample-carrying ascent vehicle, a fully autonomous rendezvous in lunar orbit, the exchange of sample material between spacecraft modules and the successful return of the sample material.

China has now confirmed that Chang'e-5 will be launched by a Long March 5 rocket in 2017.

http://news.xinhuanet.com/english/2015-08/17/c_134527104.htm


Chinese scientists on Monday successfully tested the power system of a Long March-5 carrier rocket scheduled to serve the Chang'e-5 lunar mission around 2017.

publiusr
2015-Aug-22, 07:41 PM
It is now confirmed the service module has entered its desired orbit to start it's support activities to for Chang'e-5, ( wish the Chinese would say exactly what the support activities are)

http://news.xinhuanet.com/english/china/2015-01/13/c_133915882.htm


Service module? That would be the structure behind the Soyuz like capsule.

The forward compartment, unlike the inert sphere that is the Soyuz living space, actually has its own thrusters. I think that is what you mean. The orbital module:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shenzhou_(spacecraft)#/media/File:Post_S-7_Shenzhou_spacecraft.png

The true service compartment acts like retros to slow the capsule--where it is then discarded, I would think.

New book
http://www.springer.com/gp/book/9783319194721?utm_campaign=CON26245_2&utm_medium=newsletter&utm_source=email&wt_mc=email.newsletter.8.CON26245.internal_2

NEOWatcher
2015-Aug-22, 08:00 PM
Service module? That would be the structure behind the Soyuz like capsule.

The forward compartment, unlike the inert sphere that is the Soyuz living space, actually has its own thrusters. I think that is what you mean. The orbital module:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shenzhou_(spacecraft)#/media/File:Post_S-7_Shenzhou_spacecraft.png

It seems like you are confusing Shenzhou with this mission.

The orbiter of Chang'e is the module that services the mission by carrying the landing and return crafts into and out of orbit.

publiusr
2015-Aug-22, 08:04 PM
Ah--that's right.

selvaarchi
2015-Sep-04, 04:12 PM
Emily Lakdawalla highlighting that Chang'e 5 will be landing on the earth facing side of the moon and Chang'e 4 on the other side.

http://www.planetary.org/blogs/emily-lakdawalla/2015/09031006-change-5-t1-maps-future-sample-return.html


It's not clear where on the Moon this is, or what the scale of the image is. Planetary cartographer extraordinaire Phil Stooke attempted to narrow it down from the lengths of the shadows in the craters: "The terminator was crossing the Mare Crisium area over the few days the images were taken. I had been expecting a landing in Oceanus Procellarum, but the sun would have been overhead there, and these images have shadows suggesting a lower sun elevation. Possibly a site in the eastern maria, but west of Crisium. Not much to go on yet."

When I first read this news I was terribly confused because I thought that I'd heard that they had planned a landing on the farside. But I was recalling the wrong mission. It's Chang'e 4 -- the backup module to Chang'e 3 -- that is planned for a future landing on the lunar farside. That launch is not planned until around 2020.

NEOWatcher
2015-Sep-04, 06:11 PM
Emily Lakdawalla highlighting that Chang'e 5 will be landing on the earth facing side of the moon and Chang'e 4 on the other side.
I'm glad she has the list of landing missions and cleared up a lot of the confusion of the missions we have had on this thread.

I am surprised they are sending Chang'e 5 to the near side with all the testing they did with far side communication and rendezvous.

Now we need details on Chang'e 4. I'm still not sure if it is large enough for both a rover and sample return mission. Unless they are just using the components.

selvaarchi
2015-Sep-04, 08:33 PM
I'm glad she has the list of landing missions and cleared up a lot of the confusion of the missions we have had on this thread.

I am surprised they are sending Chang'e 5 to the near side with all the testing they did with far side communication and rendezvous.

Now we need details on Chang'e 4. I'm still not sure if it is large enough for both a rover and sample return mission. Unless they are just using the components.

I was as surprised as you were and am still waiting for more details of Chang'e 5 to emerge. Chang'e 4 will be much bigger as it will be launched by a LM5 and they were asking for proposals from the commercial companies to be included with it. Will not be surprised if it is a hybrid of Chang'e 4 and Chang'e 6.

selvaarchi
2015-Sep-08, 03:47 PM
China now confirms the Chang'e 4 will be the 1st craft to land on the far side of the moon before 2020. This clearly indicates Chang'e 5 to be launched in 2017 will be landing on the moon surface facing earth.

http://news.xinhuanet.com/english/2015-09/08/c_134603260.htm


China is planning to be the first country to land a lunar probe on the far side of the moon, a Chinese lunar probe scientist said Tuesday.

The mission will be carried out by Chang'e-4, a backup probe for Chang'e-3, and is slated to be launched before 2020, said Zou Yongliao from the moon exploration department under the Chinese Academy of Sciences at a deep-space exploration forum Tuesday.

Zou said government organs have ordered experts to assess the plan over the past 12 plus months. "China will be the first to complete the task if it is successful."

selvaarchi
2016-Jan-02, 01:36 AM
A nice chart that shows China's known moon ambitions till 2017. It dose not include Chang'e-4 which we now know will be launched in 2019 to the moon's south pole. Come March when China's next 5 year plan is released there should be details of their next steps to explore the moon.

It also includes links to the pictures taken by Chang'e-2, Chang'e-3 and Chang'e-5-T1

http://www.space.com/27670-china-moon-missions-explained-infographic.html

selvaarchi
2016-Jan-03, 01:41 PM
Came across this article 2017 timeline contents (http://www.futuretimeline.net/21stcentury/2017.htm#.Voj-IE_3NUA). One of the highlights in 2017 is "China launches an unmanned sample return mission to the Moon". Go to the article and there is a 8 minute video of a simulation of Chang'e-2, Chang'e-3 and Chang'e-5 flights.

selvaarchi
2016-Jan-05, 09:11 PM
Well when the Chinese do travel to the moon, they will be greeted with familiar names. this reports says there are 22 lunar features that have been given Chinese names (http://www.globaltimes.cn/content/961974.shtml).

selvaarchi
2016-Jan-15, 06:34 AM
Emily Lakdawalla take on the latest Chinese Luna missions announcement. She has more details then the article I posted here (http://cosmoquest.org/forum/showthread.php?154721-China-s-future-space-plans&p=2336493#post2336493). For example she has the month of the launch and also a communications relay satellite (based on the design of Chang'e 2) will be launched in June of 2018, and will take up a position at the Moon-Earth L2 point, where it will be able to see both the landing site and Earth.

Also included is a map showing the Chang'e 3 site with the lander and rover(Yutu) clearly marked. It also contains the new names given to some of the more prominent features around the site.

Thanks Emily for sharing.

http://www.planetary.org/blogs/emily-lakdawalla/2016/01141307-updates-on-change-program.html


An article about Chang'e 4 appeared on the website of China Daily today, and it contains a small amount of news about China's present and future lunar exploration plans. Thanks to @sinodefence on Twitter for the link and to scientist Quanzhi Ye for some help with translating the news.

It had already been reported that China planned to send Chang'e 4 (the backup model of the Chang'e 3 lander) to the lunar farside. The intent to land on the farside was announced on the Chinese Lunar Exploration Program website on December 2. The China Daily News article mentions launch dates, and they're earlier than previously discussed. A communications relay satellite (based on the design of Chang'e 2) will be launched in June of 2018, and will take up a position at the Moon-Earth L2 point, where it will be able to see both the landing site and Earth. The lander will be launched at the end of 2018. There is still no official word on what the lander's scientific payload will be, or even if it will carry another rover. Interestingly, the article mentions some kind of public involvement in the payload development. China already has experience navigating lunar orbiters to the L2 point.

selvaarchi
2016-Jan-15, 01:18 PM
A 2 minute video interview with Liu Jizhong, dean of Lunar Exploration & Aerospace Engineering Center on the Chang'e 4 mission. The part of the video that caught my eye was the pictures of Chang'e 4 towards the end of the video. There is a rover. To me the rover looked a lot bigger then the one used on the Chang'e 3 mission. That could be possible as Chang'e 4 will be launched on top of a LM 5 rocket.

http://english.cntv.cn/2016/01/15/VIDEsm2n4pGyc5kn0cgcbUB7160115.shtml


China has announced it will launch its next major lunar mission- the Chang'e-4 probe- before 2020 which, in a first for China's space efforts, will be partly funded by private investment. The craft will conduct a soft landing on the Moon’s far side, the first such probe to do so in human history.

A giant leap, both for China, and the world. The Chang'e-4 probe will explore the far side of the moon, a mysterious world, that always faces away from Earth.

selvaarchi
2016-Jan-15, 01:26 PM
This report from China confirms what Emily Lakdawalla stated in her post. Chang'e 4 will be launched on 2018:clap:.

http://news.xinhuanet.com/english/2016-01/15/c_135010577.htm


China has officially begun a new round of lunar exploration and will send the Chang'e-4 probe to the far side of the moon in 2018, China's State Administration of Science, Technology and Industry for National Defense (SASTIND) announced Thursday.

selvaarchi
2016-Jan-15, 09:19 PM
Just reread the news report from China that I posted in the thread above (#156) and realized I missed something very significant it contains.

In the last paragraph it says "China also plans to launch its Chang'e-5 lunar probe to finish the last chapter in China's three-step (orbiting, landing and return) moon exploration program. " . It started the report with "China has officially begun a new round of lunar exploration and will send the Chang'e-4 probe to the far side of the moon in 2018,".

This implies that Chang'e 4 is just the begging of this new phase. I wonder what else is in this new phase? Does it include a manned landing on the moon or will it end with just a manned orbit around the moon. The manned landing and the moon base being a future objective. Hope China's next 5 year plan due to be published in March contains the overview of the plans. (the present 5 year plan had "China's three-step (orbiting, landing and return) moon exploration program").

selvaarchi
2016-Jan-26, 01:50 AM
Ever wondered if you could access the data the Chinese moon missions have sent back to earth. Well, wonder no more, this article (http://www.planetary.org/blogs/guest-blogs/2016/01221450-china-invites-public-on-board.html) will give you the links you are looking for and what you have to do to access it.

selvaarchi
2016-Jan-27, 12:17 AM
This article is about hyperspectral imaging but it contains pictures taken by Cheng'e 1 of the moon using that technology. It was used to identity different layers of mineral deposits in the lunar crust.

http://www.popsci.com/china-to-launch-worlds-most-powerful-hyperspectral-satellite


Since the 1970s, China has a strong history of scientific and civilian utilization of hyperspectral imaging. Space-based platforms include the Chang'e lunar missions and Earth-observation from the Tiangong space station and HJ-1 small satellite. Aircraft-mounted hyperspectral imagers are used for tasks such as environmental surveys, oil prospecting, disaster relief and crop measurement. As computer processing power improves and hyperspectral sensors get smaller, Chinese civilian and military applications are likely to expand.

selvaarchi
2016-Jan-29, 03:17 AM
Ever wondered if you could access the data the Chinese moon missions have sent back to earth. Well, wonder no more, this article (http://www.planetary.org/blogs/guest-blogs/2016/01221450-china-invites-public-on-board.html) will give you the links you are looking for and what you have to do to access it.

If you tried accessing the data, you would have met some challenges along the way. Now thanks to Emily Lakdawalla there is a much easier way to get to it. She has done all the hard work, and is making it accessible from her site.

Thanks Emily.:clap:

http://www.planetary.org/blogs/emily-lakdawalla/2016/01281656-fun-with-a-new-data-set-change.html


In a recent guest blog post, Quanzhi Ye pointed to the Chinese version of the Planetary Data System, and shared the great news that Chang'e 3 lander data are now public. The website is a little bit difficult to use, but last week I managed to download all of the data from two of the cameras -- a total of 35 Gigabytes of data! -- and I've spent the subsequent week figuring out what's there and how to handle it.

So, space fans, without further ado, here, for the first time in a format easily accessible to the public, are hundreds and hundreds of science-quality images from the Chang'e 3 lander and Yutu rover. I don't usually host entire data sets (PDS-formatted and all) but I made an exception in this case because the Chinese website is a bit challenging to use.

Chang'e 3 Yutu rover panoramic camera (PCAM) data released as of January 20, 2016
Chang'e 3 lander terrain camera data (TCAM) released as of January 20, 2016

And here are just a few of the goodies contained therein. You may want to keep Phil Stooke's landing site map and Yutu route map handy for reference as you look through these!

selvaarchi
2016-Feb-12, 12:13 PM
Ignore the politics in this article and concentrate on China's Plans for the moon. One line that caught my attention was that Russia has taken the Chinese invitation to foreign nations to include their instruments in the Cheng'e 4 probe. Russia is contributing a lunar dust surveyor :clap:

There is also a lot of information of Cheng'e 4 mission itself.

http://www.larouchepub.com/other/2016/4307ch_farside_lunar_mission.html


Speaking to the Yangguang network, Liu Jizhong said, “Chang’e-4 will utilize the distinctive features of the far side which are screened from the Earth’s radio waves to develop a space science region in a forward position for a low frequency radio astronomy survey that hopefully will fill in some of the blanks in our knowledge.”

The mission will study the geology and the dust features, and how they were formed. Liu explained, “Utilizing the very old rock of the lunar crust preserved on the far side of the Moon, we can investigate its geological characteristics, and hopefully by doing that, pull together for the first time a topographical configuration of the far side, its shallow structure, the composition of the lunar material of a particular cross-section, and attain a picture of its evolution, creating new knowledge about the history of the planet.” Russian scientists have contributed a lunar dust surveyor.

The mission will also measure lunar surface residual magnetism and study its interaction with the solar wind—a magnetized plasma consisting primarily of protons and electrons.

selvaarchi
2016-Feb-14, 02:19 PM
The article below is from 2009 but it is looking at China's long term plans. As expected dates have slipped but we are very close to testing the LM5 and this is key to their circumnavigation mission according to the article.

Also more details of their LM9 (http://www.globalsecurity.org/space/world/china/cz-x.htm).

http://www.globalsecurity.org/space/world/china/piloted-lunar.htm


The absence of evidence on these human lunar exploration goals does not mean something is not happening. It can be quite to the contrary and more often than not it should be a red flag warning that something is indeed going on that will eventually manifest itself. Although the human lunar circumnavigation mission is clearly technically feasible through two different means there is no certainty of any committed program. However, the parallel development of the required technologies in both the launch vehicles along with the crewed human Shenzhou spacecraft, EVA and docking systems technology for the committed space station long term goals as well as the potential not openly committed human crewed lunar circumnavigation and lunar orbit mission capability can not be ignored except at the US own geopolitical technological surprise expense. Only the PRC’s political leadership decision has to be instituted to carry this out for it to be accomplished within the next three five year plans but China remains silent on this issue. Equally Russia could do much the same thing at anytime they choose politically to make it a State program.

One day we may wake up to a Russian and or Chinese geopolitical technological surprise and realize that with little warning that Russia or China has launched a precursor un-crewed earth orbital rendezvous (EOR) lunar circumnavigation mission to be followed by a human lunar circumnavigation mission soon afterwards. Once the CZ-5 booster becomes operational after 2013-2014, the single launch circumnavigation mission becomes possible and the lunar orbital mission becomes possible through EOR.

selvaarchi
2016-Feb-16, 12:30 PM
China going out of their way to ensure the moon samples from Chang'e 5 are not contaminated.

http://www.globaltimes.cn/content/968761.shtml


Chinese scientists have developed a system to measure the leak rate for a vacuum environment which will be used in the country's third step moon exploration program.

According to scientists at the Lanzhou Institute of Physics under the China Academy of Space Technology, the measurement system will help scientists figures out a better way to preserve samples from the moon, which are stored in a vacuum capsule, increasing the accuracy of research.

selvaarchi
2016-Mar-04, 02:20 PM
Now a top Chinese official says it openly:rimshot: the Cheng'e 5 sample return is a step towards a human lunar landing. :rimshot::clap::clap::clap:

http://gbtimes.com/china/chinas-2017-lunar-sample-return-step-towards-astronauts-moon-scientist-says


The comments were made by Hu Hao, chief designer of the China Lunar Exploration Program's (CLEP) sample return phase and a deputy to the National People's Congress, China’s top legislative body.

selvaarchi
2016-Apr-30, 10:27 AM
First time any Chinese official has mentioned a time when China will do a manned moon landing. The time given "by 2036". It could still mean in the early 2020s as many have speculated. It will very much depend of the success of the planed missions they have already committed to 2020.

More details from Andrew Jones (http://gbtimes.com/china/china-land-astronauts-moon-2036-senior-official-says).

http://www.chinadaily.com.cn/cndy/2016-04/29/content_24950217.htm


China plans to send astronauts to the moon before 2036, a senior People's Liberation Army officer said in the country's first confirmation of a manned lunar exploration program.

Lieutenant General Zhang Yulin, deputy commander of the China Manned Space Program and deputy head of the Central Military Commission's Equipment Development Department, said it will require 15 to 20 years to land astronauts on the lunar surface using technologies and know-how acquired through the nation's space projects.

galacsi
2016-May-01, 06:41 PM
It is such a slow progression ! Do the chinese really want to do manned lunar exploration ?

With chemical or nuclear rockets , recoverable or not , there is no financial incentive to go to the moon.There is no profit possible.
To do scientific reasearch ,maybe , but there are risks of human loss and this equates to a defeat for a governement.

So I understand why people are so slow to go back to the moon.Mars is better it is so far in the future !

selvaarchi
2016-May-02, 06:17 AM
It is such a slow progression ! Do the chinese really want to do manned lunar exploration ?

With chemical or nuclear rockets , recoverable or not , there is no financial incentive to go to the moon.There is no profit possible.
To do scientific reasearch ,maybe , but there are risks of human loss and this equates to a defeat for a governement.

So I understand why people are so slow to go back to the moon.Mars is better it is so far in the future !

China does want to go to the moon and I think it will be long before 2036. In 2036 we will be looking at a base there.

selvaarchi
2016-May-06, 01:15 AM
Here is another article, this time from popsic.com and it does have the option that will allow them to go to the moon before LM 9 is human rated.:D

http://www.popsci.com/china-aims-for-humanitys-return-to-moon-in-2030s-0


There are several key steps if China is going to make this happen. The official state newspaper, China Daily, noted that China would need a super heavy launch rocket capable of boosting at least 100 tons of payload into low Earth orbit. In addition to China National Space Agency (CNSA) concepts exploring using three heavy Long March 5 rockets to launch pieces of a manned lunar mission for terrestrial orbital assembly, China is beginning development of the super heavy Long March 9 (LM-9) rocket. With a Low Earth Orbit (LEO) payload of 140 tons (50 tons for a trans-lunar injection trajectory), the LM-9 is in the same weight class as the American Saturn V and Space Launch System. It's envisioned to have three stages, with the first stage consisting of four booster rockets, a quadruple double engine core stage (each individual engine would have a thrust of 480 tons), all liquid-fueled.

selvaarchi
2016-Jun-13, 04:04 PM
This is the first time I have come across an article which mentions how much moon rock Cheng'e 5 is expected to bring back to earth.

http://blog.physicsworld.com/2016/06/13/chinas-chief-moon-scientist-ziyuan-ouyang-outlines-lunar-plans/


Next up, Ouyang explained, is Chang’e 5, which will be China’s first lunar sample-return mission. Due to take off next year, Chang’e 5 will drill a hole two metres deep in the lunar surface, scoop out at least a kilogram of Moon rocks and load them onto a capsule that will be fired back to Earth. The Russians and Americans have returned Moon rocks to Earth before, but this will be the first time Chinese scientists have pulled off that feat.

Carrying such a heavy payload back home will require clever ways of cooling and decelerating the craft as it re-enters the Earth’s atmosphere, but fortunately Chinese researchers last year launched a simulator to practise the maneouvre.

selvaarchi
2016-Jul-24, 12:19 PM
An interview with China's chief designer for the China National Space Administration's (CNSA’s) Chang'e lunar exploration program. It is about the coming moon missions.

http://www.sciencemag.org/news/2016/07/qa-china-lunar-chief-plots-voyage-far-side-moon


As chief designer for the China National Space Administration's (CNSA’s) Chang'e lunar exploration program, Wu Weiren oversaw the Chang’e-3 mission that in late 2013 landed and released a rover on the moon's surface—the first soft touchdown on Earth’s satellite since a Soviet mission in 1976.

Two even more ambitious missions are on the way as China continues its rapid ascent in space science. Next year, Chang'e-5 will land, scrape up surface soil and rocks, drill down 2 meters for samples, and return the haul to Earth, all within 2 weeks or so. In 2018, CNSA, which runs the lunar program, will attempt the first ever landing on the far side of the moon. Remote observations of the far side’s geology have convinced some planetary scientists that it is the most accessible location in the solar system to study planetary accretion, crust formation, and the effects of impacts. An engineer, Wu concedes that engineering has priority in China’s lunar program: Without solid engineering, he says, scientific objectives cannot be realized.

The interview, conducted at CNSA headquarters in Beijing, was edited for brevity and clarity.

selvaarchi
2016-Aug-21, 10:15 AM
China to step up its Luna exploration as that has been identified as one of the areas for greater emphasis on R&D.

http://www.chinatopix.com/articles/98323/20160815/china-plans-outspend-science-r-d-2020.htm


By 2020, China aims to increase expenditure on scientific research and experiments to 2.5 percent of its GDP and expects its comprehensive innovation capabilities to be ranked among the world's top 15. This compares to the 2.1 percent of total national expenditures amounting to over S211 billion in 2015. The plan also aims to make China an innovation powerhouse by 2020.

On the other hand, the Science, Technology and Industry Outlook 2014 projects China will outspend the United States in science research and development by 2020. The outlook was published by the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), an intergovernmental economic organization with 35 member countries to stimulate economic progress and world trade.

It said China will place great emphasis on telecommunications; quantum computing; nuclear power; deep-sea exploration; computer circuitry; brain science and lunar exploration. Beijing also plans to increase efficiency, foster creativity and direct resources to strategic areas.

selvaarchi
2016-Sep-16, 01:40 PM
Chief engineer of China's manned space program Zhou Jianping said on Thursday that China has acquired the basic technology to carry out manned lunar missions. :clap:

http://news.xinhuanet.com/english/2016-09/16/c_135689902.htm


Compared with current missions, the technology used for manned lunar missions are more complex, Zhou said.

In order to achieve the goal of carrying out manned lunar missions, China needs rockets with greater load capacity, manned aircraft that can land on the lunar surface and return, and aircraft that can shuttle between Earth and the moon, Zhou said.

In addition, Zhou disclosed that the Wenchang Satellite Launch Center in southern China's Hainan Province is likely to be the second launch site for China's manned space program.

selvaarchi
2016-Oct-01, 06:12 AM
The article starts with what China might do with it's backup for the sample return mission, Chang'e 5. It goes on and describes Chang'e 4 and Chang'e 5.

It also describes a specialized signals relay satellite to be positioned at the Earth-moon L2 Lagrange point. This is essential for missions to the far side of the moon like Cheng'e 4. It will also make that facility available to other users who are planning robotic and human expeditions to the moon or nearby.

http://spaceflightnow.com/2016/09/29/china-developing-mission-to-return-samples-from-far-side-of-the-moon/


If China’s lunar exploration program goes according to plan, scientists could send a robotic lander to pick up samples from the far side of the moon and return them to Earth by the early 2020s, a top Chinese space official said.

China is developing a pair of identical sample return craft to fly to the moon to bring back the first lunar samples since 1976.

The first of the sampling probes, Chang’e 5, will launch by the end of next year and attempt a landing at an unspecified location on the near side of the moon. Chinese engineers are simultaneously building parts for a backup mission named Chang’e 6, according to Wu Yanhua, vice administrator of the China National Space Administration.

If next year’s mission successfully brings lunar soil samples back to Earth, the Chang’e 6 mission could be directed to a destination on the far side of the moon, Wu said this week at the International Astronautical Congress in Guadalajara, Mexico.

“Based on the success of the Chang’e 5 sample return mission, the Chang’e 6, which is a redundancy, we’ll decide on its next step, whether it’s to be on the near or the far side of the moon for a sample return mission,” Wu said Monday.

selvaarchi
2016-Oct-14, 11:11 PM
As part of the it's moon exploration plans, China is targeting both the poles.

http://gbtimes.com/china/china-aims-pole-position-lunar-exploration


The body overseeing China’s space programme has announced it is developing a comprehensive 20 year strategy for lunar and interplanetary exploration, including sending probes to the Moon’s poles, potential human landings, and missions to Mars and beyond.

China is already finalising missions that will collect and return lunar samples to Earth in late 2017, Chang'e-5, and the first-ever landing on the far side of the Moon, involving a relay satellite, lander and rover, a year later.

Under the new plans, the Chinese Lunar Exploration Programme (CLEP) will now be expanded to include missions to both of the Moons poles.

"The exploration of lunar poles is a significant innovation in human history, which has drawn great attention from around the world. It will also lay a solid foundation for deeper and more accurate Moon probes in the future," Tian Yulong, chief engineer at the State Administration for Science, Technology and Industry for National Defence (SASTIND), told CCTV.

selvaarchi
2016-Oct-24, 03:27 PM
China's scientist are confident that their plans for the moon are proceeding as planned. Chang'e-5 (the sample return mission), will be the last phase of China's 3 step process to explore the moon. The next phase of the moon exploration will begin with Chang'e 4 in 2018. They have hinted that their next phase of moon exploration will be detailed in a paper to be published at the end of this year.

There is still one critical test to be done before any of their future moon plans can take off, This is a successful launch of their maiden flight of the Long March 5. If the grapevine is correct than that will be on 3rd of next month.

http://gbtimes.com/china/chinas-change-5-moon-sample-return-mission-course-2017-launch


Preparations for China's 2017 lunar sample return mission, Chang'e-5, are proceeding as planned, according to the chief scientist of China's Lunar Exploration Project (CLEP).

Ouyang Ziyuan, a cosmochemist, told reporters in Tianjin on Sunday that the mission would mark the final phase of China's plans to robotically orbit, land on and return samples from the Moon.

Mr Ouyang said analysis of the structure and component of the samples to be collected by Chang'e-5 would help scientists deepen the study into the formation and the evolution of the moon.

"We are ready. Every lab is ready," he said. "Once the samples are back, we can begin our analysis right away."

selvaarchi
2016-Nov-10, 10:51 AM
According to this article, China now has the technology to do a manned moon mission.

http://arstechnica.com/science/2016/11/china-now-has-a-rocket-that-can-land-taikonauts-on-the-moon/

At present only two nations can put humans safely into space: Russia and China. Additionally, only two nations can put medium-sized payloads into space, the United States and China. Only one nation can do both. Payload and crewed launch capabilities will allow China to build a modular space station during the next decade that will invite visitors from Europe and elsewhere and will almost certainly outlast NASA's International Space Station.

While China has focused on a space station and has not yet set a definitive timeline for going into deep space, it must be noted that the country now has the capacity to mount a human mission to the Moon, if it so chooses. The Long March-5 rocket is powerful enough to stage an Earth orbit for landings on the Moon and to push a payload of about eight metric tons into a Lunar transfer orbit (LTO).

"By launching and rendezvousing four of those in low Earth orbit, it would be possible for the Chinese to construct a manned lunar mission with no more than that rocket and no more than Apollo technology," former NASA Administrator Mike Griffin told the House Science, Space, and Technology committee in September, 2011. "And I've—I have in fact, in the past, written up how that mission would work from an engineering perspective. So with the Long March-5, the Chinese inherently possessed the capability to return to the Moon should they wish to do so."

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publiusr
2016-Nov-12, 09:39 PM
Some anti-SLS snark in the article--as if the folks who build it aren't also in the private sector.

Long March 5 is Proton class--and Proton thumped a rump Soyuz only on a circumlunar mission--the Zonds--OR carried one way Lunokhods.

CZ-9 will be their moon-ship launcher

selvaarchi
2016-Nov-13, 03:32 AM
Some anti-SLS snark in the article--as if the folks who build it aren't also in the private sector.

Long March 5 is Proton class--and Proton thumped a rump Soyuz only on a circumlunar mission--the Zonds--OR carried one way Lunokhods.

CZ-9 will be their moon-ship launcher
LM-9 for a single shot to the moon like the USA did with the moon landings.

LM-5 will need 4 launches and of course there will be some assembling reguired. Will not be surprised if they use the CSS to help with the assembly.

LM-9 will come into play when they start building the moon Base.

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selvaarchi
2016-Dec-16, 11:31 PM
Chang'e-3 is still working after 3 years (at least one of its instruments is working) :clap:.

http://gbtimes.com/china/3-years-after-moon-landing-chinas-change-3-still-alive


China's Chang'e-3 lunar lander reawakened on December 9, just days before marking its third anniversary of touching down on the Moon.

The lander, which set down on the Moon and deployed the Yutu lander on December 14, 2013, is now into its 38th lunar day operations after 'hibernating' during the latest lunar night.

The mission made China only the third country to soft-land on the Moon, following the United States and Soviet Union. It has also laid the groundwork for more ambitious projects.

Chang'e-3 has demonstrated the techniques and capabilities for soft-landing and long-term operation on the Moon, extreme environmental adaptability with lunar nights and days seeing temperatures ranging from -180 to +100 degrees Celsius).

selvaarchi
2016-Dec-29, 03:46 AM
Now China has confirmed that they will also send missions to both the poles of the moon.

http://news.xinhuanet.com/english/2016-12/27/c_135936458.htm

China is planning missions to explore the far side of the Moon and to send robots to explore both lunar poles.

Plans to send astronauts to the Moon are also being discussed, according to Wu Yanhua, vice director of the China National Space Administration.

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selvaarchi
2017-Jan-02, 01:52 PM
ANDREW JONES on China's preparation for Cheng'e 5 mission.

At the end of the article he indicates that India, Japan and USA have missions to the moon also in the next few years.

http://gbtimes.com/china/china-preparing-2017-moon-sample-return-mission-change-5

Scientists in China are engaged in intense preparations for the launch of the Chang'e-5 lunar probe in the second half of 2017, state media report.

The complex mission will involve a number of stages and components that will combine to land on and collect samples from the Moon, before ascending, a docking in lunar orbit, and heading home.

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selvaarchi
2017-Jan-03, 01:58 PM
Cheng'e 5 mission if successful will give five firsts for China.

http://www.ecns.cn/cns-wire/2017/01-03/239914.shtml


Hu Hao, the chief designer of the third phase, said Chang'e-5 weighs 8.2 tons and will be launched by the rocket Long March 5.

The mission is expected to achieve five firsts for China since the country initiated its space exploration programs: first unmanned sampling, first takeoff from the moon's surface, first unmanned docking on the moon orbiting 380,000km from Earth, and first return to Earth with lunar soil samples at a speed close to the escape velocity.

selvaarchi
2017-Jan-03, 01:58 PM
Cheng'e 5 mission if successful will give five firsts for China.

http://www.ecns.cn/cns-wire/2017/01-03/239914.shtml


Hu Hao, the chief designer of the third phase, said Chang'e-5 weighs 8.2 tons and will be launched by the rocket Long March 5.

The mission is expected to achieve five firsts for China since the country initiated its space exploration programs: first unmanned sampling, first takeoff from the moon's surface, first unmanned docking on the moon orbiting 380,000km from Earth, and first return to Earth with lunar soil samples at a speed close to the escape velocity.

selvaarchi
2017-Jan-05, 01:38 AM
Another article from Dr Paul D. Spudis on the dangers to the US from China's progress on the moon missions.

http://www.airspacemag.com/daily-planet/chinas-moon-missions-are-anything-pointless-180961633/

"At the end of 2016, China released a paper describing the nation’s very successful year in space, including an outline of their upcoming and future plans and intentions. Though well underway, China’s space accomplishments and stated plans continue to fly over the heads of many who continue to dismissively call Chinese lunar efforts “pointless.” While China continues to collect data from their 2013 Chang’E 3 lunar lander, this new report discusses two new Chang’E missions to the Moon—a lander/rover to be sent to the far side and another lander to collect samples of the lunar surface’s near side.

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selvaarchi
2017-Jan-09, 07:05 AM
If we what to go to a new destination, we will get a map of it to identify places of interest.

China clearly has indicated that they want to go to the moon. To that end they have decided to create a 1:2.5 million scale geological map of the Moon.

http://news.xinhuanet.com/english/2017-01/05/c_135957816.htm

"Ouyang Ziyuan, first chief scientist of China's lunar exploration program, said five universities and research institutes have set standards for digital mapping and drawing of the Moon's geological structure.

A sketch version of the map, 4.36 meters by 2.2 meters, will be finished by 2018, and released by 2020.

The map will provide information on geology, structure and rock types and will reflect the timeline of the Moon's evolution."

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selvaarchi
2017-Jan-23, 11:20 PM
Latest date for China's manned moon landing - 2032 :(

http://www.popsci.com/china-lunar-lander-moon


Though China's goal of landing a man on the moon is still more than a decade away, the country is already testing key equipment for the 2032 mission. Most recently, the program has been testing the landing gear for the lunar module.

The lunar module is the part of the manned spacecraft that will actually touch down on the moon's surface. When used, the upper half of the module blasts back up into orbit to rendezvous with the orbiting command module.

Landing gear is a critical for a successful lunar mission. It needs to be able to brace the rest of the lander, as well as actively adjust to uneven terrain by manipulating its computer-controlled struts assemblies. Like the rest of the module, the landing gear needs to be shielded against thermal changes as well as be robust enough to handle the surface impact. (For context, the Apollo lunar module had a terminal speed of 7 feet per second). Since the landing gear is the only part of the module that will make actual contact with the lunar terrain, it may also contain instruments in the landing pads to gather scientific data on lunar soil.

selvaarchi
2017-Jan-25, 10:54 PM
The camera pointing system used by Chang'e 3 was developed in Hong Kong.

http://m.scmp.com/presented/news/topics/polyu-innovating-better-world/article/2065275/camera-pointing-system-moon

"At 1:11pm on the afternoon of 14 December 2013, Chang’e-3 touched down gently on the surface of the moon at Sinus Iridum, the “Bay of Rainbows”.

The landing was smooth and without incident, as evidenced by the clear images that came beaming back to Beijing from the camera pointing system that sat securely on top of the lunar lander.

This great achievement was a first for China and also for the team of scientists from The Hong Kong Polytechnic University who developed and built the tiny 85cm long camera pointing system — the first such instrument made in Hong Kong for China’s lunar exploration programme."

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selvaarchi
2017-Mar-02, 05:42 AM
Chang'5 mission will complete the 3rd phase of the moon three step programme. Chang'e 4 will then be the start of their 4th phase of their moon exploration plans.

http://gbtimes.com/china/chinese-lunar-exploration-enter-new-phase-missions-moons-poles-and-far-side

"With the launch of the Chang'e-5 Moon sample return probe this November, China will complete its original three-step programme to separately orbit, land on, and collect materials from the Moon.

But the country's ambitions won't stop there, according to Ye Peijian, a chief commander of the China Lunar Exploration Project (CLEP).

Ye told media on Wednesday that the pioneering Chang'e-4 mission to the lunar far side in late 2018 - utilising the backup lander and rover from the Chang'e-3 mission - will kick off a brand new fourth phase of exploration."

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selvaarchi
2017-Mar-09, 02:51 AM
The history of China's moon exploration ambition.

https://chinaspacereport.com/programmes/china-lunar-exploration/

"When China launched its first artificial Earth satellite into orbit in 1970, Chinese space professionals envisaged that ambitious missions to explore the Moon and other planets in the solar system would soon follow. However, by the mid-1970s the country was on the verge of being bankrupt following a decade of political chaos brought by the so-called Cultural Revolution movement. The political leadership in the post-Mao era decided to focus on economic development. As a result, the Chinese space programme was scaled back to a new, more moderate objective of developing applications satellites.

In 1990, Japan became the third country to place an object in orbit around the Moon with its Hiten spacecraft. In 1994, NASA also launched its Clementine lunar exploration mission. Other space-fairing nations were also planning similar missions. In a fear that China may fall behind other nations in the new round of race to the Moon, the topic of lunar exploration re-emerged within the Chinese space community. In 1992, a mission was proposed by the scientific community to use a spare CZ-3 launcher to send a metal emblem to the Moon surface, as a celebration for the return of Hong Kong from the British colony in 1997. However, the idea was rejected due to a lack of funding."

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selvaarchi
2017-Mar-09, 07:40 AM
Details of what is know about China's quest to send astronauts to the moon.

https://chinaspacereport.com/programmes/manned-lunar-programme/

"The Chinese space industry has been studying the feasibility of a mission to land human on the Moon, followed by a man-tended lunar base. So far only conceptual studies have been carried out, with no programme being officially approved by the Chinese government. Relevant pre-research is currently underway, including the development of high-thrust rocket engines for a super heavy-lift launcher.

Talks about a possible manned lunar mission emerged within the Chinese space community in the early 2000s. During the Expo 2000 in Hannover, Germany, the China Aerospace Science and Technology Corporation (CASC) displayed a mock-up showing Chinese astronauts driving a lunar rover on the Moon surface and a lunar base."

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selvaarchi
2017-Apr-17, 12:39 PM
Andrew Jones speculates on China's future moon plans.

http://www.planetary.org/blogs/guest-blogs/2017/20170406-change-5-future.html


China will launch one of its most complex and exciting missions so far later this year, when Chang'e-5 attempts to land on and collect samples from the Moon before delivering them to Earth—the first such mission by any country for more than four decades. The mission will be an engineering feat and result in some significant science, but it also has some interesting subplots.

Chang'e-5 marks the third and final stage of the original China Lunar Exploration Program (CLEP) approved in the early 2000s, which set out to first orbit and map the Moon (Chang'e-1 and 2), then land and rove on the lunar surface (Chang'e-3 and Yutu), and finally collect samples and bring them to Earth for analysis.

Following earlier successes and technological breakthroughs, Chang'e-5 is now scheduled to launch in late November from Wenchang on a new Long March 5 heavy-lift rocket.

The last lunar sample return was the Soviet Union's Luna 24 in 1976, so China is clearly still catching up. But rather than merely copying Cold War-era missions, as has often been suggested, this will also provide lessons and experience for more ambitious missions in the future.*

The Luna 24 ascent stage returned directly to Earth, but China has decided that the Chang'e-5 mission will rely on a lunar orbit rendezvous similar to that used for the Apollo landings. The 8.2 metric ton Chang'e-5 spacecraft thus consists of a service module, lander, ascent unit, and a return vehicle.*

After collecting samples, the ascent module will lift off and dock with the service module in orbit around the Moon, nearly 400,000 kilometers away from Earth. The samples will be transferred to the reentry capsule, which itself will separate from the service module a few thousand kilometers from Earth before reentry and landing.*

The lunar orbit rendezvous approach is a very interesting choice we'll look at later, but note for now that this will be the first robotic rendezvous and docking around a planetary body other than the Earth.

selvaarchi
2017-Apr-28, 11:00 AM
China eyes international cooperation in a moon base.

http://www.globaltimes.cn/content/1044110.shtml


The country is discussing possible cooperation with international counterparts, including the European Space Agency (ESA), on building the international 'Moon Village,'" Tian Yulong, secretary-general of the China National Space Administration, said on Monday, China's Space Day, in Xi'an, capital city of Northwest China's Shaanxi Province, Science and Technology Daily reported.

The ESA plan calls for the use of robots on the moon in the 2020s to begin constructing facilities, followed a few years later by the first inhabitants, said the report.

Though no official announcement was made on the timetable of the manned lunar base, the ESA announced at a symposium in December 2015 that construction could begin as early as in five years, suggesting that it could provide a potential pit stop for future missions to Mars, the Australian-based science website Science Alert reported.*

Jiao Weixin, a professor at the School of Earth and Space Sciences in Peking University, told the Global Times on Tuesday that China's participation in the international construction of the "Moon Village" manifest China's open-mindedness, and its willingness to create common benefits and win-win results for the international community.

The "moon village," a long-term manned scientific research base, is an inevitable step as lunar studies develop, as it can greatly enhance research and provide unique conditions to study the moon, Jiao said.

He added that China should be confident in and stick to its own moon exploration agenda, which has been fruitful, instead of trying to catch up with other countries' achievements.

selvaarchi
2017-May-09, 05:40 AM
China's experts met in April to discuss the next phase of their moon exploration ambitions.

http://gbtimes.com/china/china-moves-forward-far-side-moon-sample-mission-and-expanded-lunar-plans

"The State Administration for Science, Technology and Industry for National Defence (SASTIND), held its first expert committee meeting, including top lunar project officials Wu Weiren and Ye Peijian, to discuss the scientific objectives and implementation of the expanded plans in late April (Chinese).

Probes to both lunar poles are also being developed for the early-to-mid 2020s, which tentatively involve surface exploration, resource development and related technology validation.

"The exploration of lunar poles is a significant innovation in human history, which has drawn great attention from around the world. It will also lay a solid foundation for deeper and more accurate Moon probes in the future," Tian Yulong, chief engineer at SASTIND, said in October.

Such missions will also be of interest to the European Space Agency (ESA), which has been discussing cooperation in and coordination of lunar exploration plans with China as part of ESA's 'Moon Village' concept."

selvaarchi
2017-May-11, 10:47 AM
China's moon habitat will have two more sets of 4 persons to research how they will cope with long duration stays.

http://news.xinhuanet.com/english/2017-05/10/c_136272414.htm

"While it remains unclear exactly how long China's first lunar explorers will spend on the surface, the country is already planning for longer stays.
Eight Chinese volunteers will live in "Yuegong-1," a simulated space "cabin" in Beijing for the next year, strengthening China's knowledge and technical know-how, and helping the country's scientists understand exactly what will be required for humans to remain on the moon in the medium and long terms.
The volunteers, all civilians and elite postgraduate students from Beihang University, are divided into two groups. The first four stepped into Yuegong-1 on Wednesday. The two men and two women will stay in the cabin for 60 days, then be replaced by the second group, also two men and two women, who will stay there for 200 days. After that, the first group will return for the remaining 105 days."

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selvaarchi
2017-Jun-07, 10:09 AM
First hints of China's manned moon ambitious.

http://mobile.reuters.com/article/idUSKBN18Y01U

"China is making "preliminary" preparations to send a man to the moon, state media cited a senior space official as saying, the latest goal in China's ambitious lunar exploration program.

China in 2003 became the third country to put a man in space with its own rocket after the former Soviet Union and the United States.

It has touted its plans for moon exploration and in late 2013 completed the first lunar "soft landing" since 1976 with the Chang'e-3 craft and its Jade Rabbit rover."

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selvaarchi
2017-Jun-07, 03:58 PM
More details of the China's manned moon landing plans disclosed.

http://www.globaltimes.cn/content/1050395.shtml

"Wu Yansheng, president of China Aerospace Science and Technology Corporation (CASC), also said that China is working on a manned lunar landing plan.

The mission will consist of a manned spaceship, a propulsion vehicle and a lunar lander. The manned spaceship and the lunar lander will be sent into circumlunar orbit separately, according to Wu."

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selvaarchi
2017-Jun-08, 03:12 PM
China is discussing with Russia on cooperation with each others lunar plans.

http://www.go-taikonauts.com/en/1725-china-and-russia-discuss-cooperation-in-each-others-lunar-exploration-programmes

"During the Global Space Exploration Conference GLEX, the Head of the Department for International Cooperation of the China National Space Administration (CNSA) told Russian news agency RIA Novosti that China and Russia are discussing options for cooperation in projects for the exploration of the Moon: "We are trying to cooperate on the lunar programme, because China has its missions Chang'e-4, Chang'e-5, Chang'e-6, Russia has Luna-26, Luna-27, Luna-28. These are very similar missions, and we are discussing with Russia possible cooperation within these projects at the system level or the overall stage." "

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selvaarchi
2017-Jul-28, 01:06 PM
Update on the experience of latest set of inhabitants of China's “Yuegong-1,” or Lunar Palace 1.

https://qz.com/1034097/a-chinese-university-is-putting-students-on-a-grueling-space-diet-of-food-grown-with-their-own-poop/


Grinding wheat from scratch, eating veggies grown in your own waste, and fried worms for dinner: Life in space is no picnic.

At Beihang University, formerly known as Beijing University of Aeronautics and Astronautics, four students on July 9 entered a capsule meant to simulate space living and will remain in it for more than six months, sustaining themselves on what they grow inside. They succeeded an earlier batch of students, who lived in the surprisingly roomy 1,600-square-foot capsule for two months. Along the way, the capsule residents have kept a weekly journal on WeChat. Rather like the logs in the movie Martian, it focuses on the business of growing, preparing, and disposing of food.

selvaarchi
2017-Sep-30, 06:26 AM
Possible landing sites for the upcoming Chinese lunar missions.

http://www.planetary.org/blogs/guest-blogs/2017/20170920-change-5-and-4-landing-sites.html


Fast forward 30 years. I have studied lunar and Mars exploration history and published books about missions to the Moon and Mars, and from the earliest stage of planning I decided to tell the story of site selection for every mission. Often I had to go back to the original source materials like those volumes of minutes, or to the people who did the work, including Ewen Whitaker for the Ranger impact missions and Don Wilhelms for Apollo. Now I am updating my decade-old Moon book and trying to keep up with site selection work going on today around the world, for planned missions from Europe, Japan, India and Russia, for Google Lunar X Prize teams, and for two upcoming Chinese landers. Chang'E 5 will conduct a sample return mission late in 2017, and Chang'E 4 will carry a rover to the far side of the Moon, the first mission ever to do so, about a year later. The apparent reversal of numbering is a result of the original sequence of missions planned by China (two orbiters, two landers with rovers, two sample returns), which were given numbers according to their positions in that sequence rather than the launch date. As it turns out, there is now a possibility that the numerical order will be followed because a test launch of the large new rocket which Chang'E 5 will ride on failed on July 2nd this year, and it may not be ready to launch the spacecraft in 2017.

selvaarchi
2018-Jan-26, 02:31 PM
China's moon habitat will have two more sets of 4 persons to research how they will cope with long duration stays.

http://news.xinhuanet.com/english/2017-05/10/c_136272414.htm

"While it remains unclear exactly how long China's first lunar explorers will spend on the surface, the country is already planning for longer stays.
Eight Chinese volunteers will live in "Yuegong-1," a simulated space "cabin" in Beijing for the next year, strengthening China's knowledge and technical know-how, and helping the country's scientists understand exactly what will be required for humans to remain on the moon in the medium and long terms.
The volunteers, all civilians and elite postgraduate students from Beihang University, are divided into two groups. The first four stepped into Yuegong-1 on Wednesday. The two men and two women will stay in the cabin for 60 days, then be replaced by the second group, also two men and two women, who will stay there for 200 days. After that, the first group will return for the remaining 105 days."

They have completed the 200 days stay in Yuegong-1 successfully. this was a world record for the longest stay in a self-contained "cabin."

http://www.xinhuanet.com/english/2018-01/26/c_136926744.htm


Two men and two women volunteered and spent 200 days in a simulated space lab in Beijing, setting a world record for the longest stay in a self-contained "cabin."

The biomedicine students from Beihang University, the second group of volunteers staying in Yuegong-1, also known as Lunar Palace 1, completed the second phase of its 365-day on-ground experiment Friday.

The first group of volunteers, who had previously stayed in the cabin for 60 days, re-entered the cabin Friday to the replace the second group, starting the third and final phase which will last 105 days.

More details in the following post.

https://phys.org/news/2018-01-chinese-volunteers-days-virtual-moon.html


Chinese students spent 200 continuous days in a "lunar lab" in Beijing, state media said Friday, as the country prepares for its long-term goal of putting people on the moon.

Four students crammed into a 160-square-metre (1,720-square-foot) cabin called "Yuegong-1"—Lunar Palace—on the campus of Beihang University, testing the limits of humans' ability to live in a self-contained space, the official Xinhua news agency said.

The volunteers lived in the sealed lab to simulate a long-term space mission with no input from the outside world.

The experience tested them to the limit, the module's chief designer Liu Hong told Xinhua, especially on three occasions when the lab experienced unexpected blackouts.

The experience "challenged the system as well as the psychological status of the volunteers, but they withstood the test," Liu said.

The facility treats human waste with a bio-fermentation process, and volunteers grew experimental crops and vegetables with the help of food and waste byproducts.

selvaarchi
2018-Mar-25, 03:01 PM
China is showcasing their moon achievements at the northern Swiss city of Basel.

http://www.xinhuanet.com/english/2018-03/25/c_137063605.htm


Switzerland, March 25 (Xinhua) -- An exhibition focusing on China's Lunar Exploration Program (CLEP) kicked off Saturday in the northern Swiss city of Basel, highlighting some of the magnificent achievements of China's aerospace industry.

As part of the ongoing Baselworld 2018 Show, the exhibition was presented jointly by China's Chang'E Aerospace Technology (Beijing) LLC and TAG Heuer, the avant-garde Swiss watchmaker, strategic partner and official timekeeper of CLEP.

"We feel honored to take this opportunity to demonstrate the achievements of CLEP, which is of great significance to the development of China's aerospace industry," Xu Xingli, general manager of Chang'E Aerospace Technology (Beijing) LLC, said at the opening ceremony of the exhibition.

selvaarchi
2018-Sep-05, 05:21 AM
We know about about China's desire to be a leading space power which this article is about. What surprised in the article, was the information that over the next 3 years they plan an unmanned moon research station.

http://www.globaltimes.cn/content/1118130.shtml


Over the next three years, China will conduct a series of significant projects including construction of a manned space station and an unmanned moon research station. An unmanned Mars orbit and landing, and unmanned voyage to take a sample of an asteroid will also be launched. Moreover, the BeiDou 3 global satellite navigation system and high-resolution earth observation system will be completed.

selvaarchi
2018-Sep-19, 12:32 PM
The Planetary Society on China's Chang’e-4 and -5 missions and what we hope to learn from them about the moon.

http://www.planetary.org/explore/the-planetary-report/china-new-lunar-missions.html


Currently, the only way scientists can determine the ages of these young basalt lava flows is to count craters superposed on top of them. Younger materials have had less time to accumulate impact craters, so they contain fewer craters per unit area. But this is not a precise age-dating method. Returning samples from these young basalts would provide a number for the age of the volcanism.

The Moon is the only cratered terrestrial world from which we have returned samples. Lunar geologists have matched cratering chronology with absolute ages measured from returned lunar samples, building a bridge between crater chronology and absolute ages. The chronology of the rest of the solar system is pinned to lunar chronology. So, Chang’e-5’s success will not only teach us more about the Moon; it will also assist in our understanding of the geological evolution of planetary bodies throughout the solar system.

selvaarchi
2018-Sep-25, 09:27 AM
China hopes to send 4 missions to the moon's poles by 2030. This includes the Chang'e 4 mission.

http://www.xinhuanet.com/english/2018-09/25/c_137491923.htm


China plans to land on and explore the southern and northern polar regions of the Moon by 2030, according to an official of the China National Space Administration (CNSA).

Li Guoping, director of the Department of System Engineering of the CNSA, said at the World Conference on Science Literacy 2018 recently held in Beijing that China is planning four missions for the fourth stage of its lunar exploration program.

China's lunar exploration program, named after the legendary Chang'e, a moon goddess accompanied by a jade rabbit, started in 2003, and the first three stages of the program include orbiting and landing on the Moon, and bringing samples back to Earth.

Li said the fourth stage of the program will include sending the Chang'e-4 lunar probe to the far side of the Moon at the end of 2018, which is expected to become the world's first soft-landing, roving probe on the Moon's far side. A relay satellite, named Queqiao (Magpie Bridge), for Chang'e-4 has entered a Halo orbit around the second Lagrangian (L2) point of the Earth-Moon system, about 65,000 km from the Moon in June.

selvaarchi
2018-Dec-18, 12:43 PM
Andrew Jones report on the active missions still working in the moon environment. It also says Chang'e 3 lander will stop communication for now to allow space for the Chang'e 4 mission.

https://gbtimes.com/chinas-still-operational-change-3-moon-lander-to-hibernate-for-change-4-lunar-far-side-mission?cat=chinas-space-program


Five years after landing on the near side of the Moon, China's Chang'e-3 lunar lander will be powered down in preparation for the Chang'e-4 lunar far side mission.

Chang'e-3 became the first spacecraft to soft-land on the Moon since the Soviet Luna 24 mission in 1976 when it touched down on Mare Imbrium on December 14, 2013, and made China only the third country to achieve such a feat.

With the mission's repurposed backup spacecraft, known as Chang'e-4, currently in lunar orbit and preparing for an unprecedented landing on the far side of the Moon in early January, researchers with the China Lunar Exploration Project (CLEP) will put the 1,200 kg Chang'e-3 lander into an extended sleep in order to prevent signal interference, according to a report by Chinese language CCTV.

selvaarchi
2018-Dec-22, 02:25 PM
Scientific American in its latest publication carries an article "With First-Ever Landing on Moon’s Farside, China Enters “Luna Incognita”"

https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/with-first-ever-landing-on-moons-farside-china-enters-luna-incognita/


China is once again on the threshold of a historic first in its fast-paced exploration of Earth’s moon.

Having sent three previous missions moonward since 2007, including one that hosted the nation’s first-ever robotic lander and rover, China’s latest lunar foray began in the early hours of December 8, 2018, when a Long March-3B carrier rocket launched from the Xichang Satellite Launch Center in southwest China’s Sichuan Province, carrying the Chang’e-4 spacecraft. Consisting of a lander and a rover, Chang’e-4 is targeting the moon’s farside, the lunar hemisphere that is always facing away from Earth. No spacecraft has ever achieved a soft landing there before, although in 1962 NASA crashed its Ranger 4 probe into the farside surface.

selvaarchi
2018-Dec-31, 03:28 PM
China is aiming for the moon.

https://spacenews.com/change-4-landing-to-be-a-step-along-a-road-of-lunar-exploration-for-china/


With its Chang’e-4 spacecraft now orbiting the moon in preparation for the first-ever landing on the far side of Earth’s nearest neighbor, China is poised to reap the prestige and scientific payoffs that are part and parcel of achieving a space first.

Despite being a repurposed backup to the 2013 Chang’e-3 landing, Chang’e-4’s planned January touch down on the far side of the moon will also be a steppingstone to further and more ambitious robotic lunar exploration missions.

“Chang’e-4 will validate further technologies of landing, enhanced rover operations and more complex far side communications. It also uses more powerful instruments,” Bernard Foing, director of the European Space Agency’s International Lunar Exploration Working Group, told SpaceNews.

selvaarchi
2019-Jan-13, 12:13 AM
Chang'e-4 to lay foundation for future human presence on the moon.

http://www.xinhuanet.com/english/2019-01/12/c_137738718.htm


Nearly 50 years have passed since people first stood on the moon. Can we return? How will radiation on the moon affect astronauts? How much water is there? Where did the water come from?

To better understand the lunar environment and prepare for a human return to the moon, the Chang'e-4 probe, which has just made the first-ever soft landing on the far side of the moon, carries payloads jointly developed by Chinese, German and Swedish scientists to conduct research.

"Our goal is to measure particle radiation on the lunar surface and the risk to people and equipment," said Zhang Shenyi, a researcher with the National Space Science Center (NSSC) under the Chinese Academy of Sciences.

selvaarchi
2019-Jan-14, 04:38 PM
More on China's future robotic moon missions.

http://www.xinhuanet.com/english/2019-01/14/c_137743306.htm


China will launch the Chang'e-5 probe by the end of this year to bring moon samples back to Earth, a senior official of the China National Space Administration (CNSA) announced Monday.

The Chang'e-4 mission realized the first-ever soft-landing on the far side of the moon, and its success has inaugurated the fourth phase of China's lunar exploration program.

"Experts are still discussing and verifying the feasibility of subsequent projects, but it's confirmed that there will be another three missions after Chang'e-5," said Wu Yanhua, deputy head of the CNSA, at a press conference of the State Council Information Office.

selvaarchi
2019-Jan-24, 12:28 AM
Andrew Jones on China's future moon plans.

http://www.planetary.org/blogs/guest-blogs/2019/whats-next-for-china.html


With China's pioneering Chang'e-4 spacecraft settled in for a first lunar night on the far side of the Moon, the downtime gives us a chance to look at what plans China has for future lunar exploration.

We might not be waiting long for another complex and exciting Moon mission, as the Chang'e-5 lunar sample return—the first since the Soviet Luna 24 in 1976—is currently slated for liftoff at the end of 2019.

Consisting of a service module, lander, ascent vehicle and return capsule, the mission will attempt to land in Oceanus Procellarum on the near side of the Moon to drill down and collect up to 2 kilograms of samples and bring them to Earth following a lunar orbit rendezvous.

The mission and its goals have been long known and it marks the final stage of the three-step lunar exploration program set out in the early 2000s to orbit, land on and then return from the Moon.

China is however designing a new, fourth stage of missions, which will target the south pole, use new technologies and could involve cooperation with major space faring nations and agencies

selvaarchi
2019-Mar-12, 03:33 PM
A well written article by Dwayne Day on China's moon ambitions in this weeks Space Review.

http://www.thespacereview.com/article/3674/1


Chinese astronauts were supposed to be walking on the Moon by now. Back in 2005, if you read numerous articles about the Chinese space program, you would have noticed various authors claiming that China was going to land taikonauts on the Moon in 2017, and at least one article claimed this would happen as early as 2010. Two common themes that began appearing in space articles back then were that China had an active human lunar program, and they were in a “race” with the United States to send people to the surface of the Moon, neither of which was true. Articles in The Space Review over a decade ago warned about these distortions.

publiusr
2019-Mar-16, 06:22 PM
They didn't put enough money on CZ-9 soon enough.

selvaarchi
2019-Jul-17, 12:54 PM
"China expected to send man to moon by 2035: observers"

http://www.ecns.cn/news/sci-tech/2019-07-17/detail-ifzkzyey4244294.shtml


With the coming 50th anniversary of the moon landing, a Chinese aerospace expert speculated that China would be able to achieve its own manned lunar landing by around 2035, establishing a permanent lunar base rather than NASA's symbolic footprint of 1969.

Saturday marks the 50th anniversary of the first man on the moon, with posts to commemorate the historic moment going viral on Chinese social media platforms such as Sina Weibo.

Encouraged by China's space achievements, many posted online that lunar exploration was viable in the foreseeable future.

Among them, Wang Ya'nan, chief editor of Aerospace Knowledge magazine, speculated that China will be "technically ready" for a manned lunar landing by around 2035.

The space expert told the Global Times Tuesday that unlike the Apollo projects with their Cold War competition between the U.S. and the Soviet Union, China's manned lunar landing, hopefully in the "decade between 2030 to 2040," would be conducted with clear and specific scientific research goals.

Such goals include exploring the possibility of establishing a permanent moon village or base for researchers to conduct long-term scientific projects and using the natural satellite of the Earth as an energy supply hub for deeper space exploration, Wang said.

selvaarchi
2019-Jul-19, 06:49 PM
"China's Plans to Solve the Mysteries of the Moon"

http://english.cas.cn/newsroom/news/201907/t20190718_213194.shtml


Fifty years ago, on July 20, 1969, the world watched as Neil Armstrong walked on the Moon. Since then, space agencies around the globe have sent rovers to Mars, probes to the furthest reaches of our galaxy and beyond, yet humanity’s curiosity and fascination with the Moon has never abated.

China, in collaboration with several countries, is now at the forefront of lunar exploration. In an article published on July 18 in Science, researchers laid out what the China Lunar Exploration Program (CLEP) has accomplished since their launch in 2007 and their plans into the next three decades.

"Fifty years after Neil Armstrong took, 'one small step for man, one giant leap for mankind' as the first human to set foot on the Moon, China's CE-4 lander and Yutu 2 rover left the footprints of humanity's first robotic visit to the surface of the far side of the Moon," said LI Chunlai, article author and the Deputy Director-General of National Astronomical Observatories of the Chinese Academies of Science (NAOC).

The exploration of the far side of the Moon led to the unexpected discovery of possible lunar mantle material on the surface - a potential indicator of the severity of asteroid impacts in the early days of the Moon. The Chinese missions also led to the highest resolution global image and topographic data of the Moon to date.

selvaarchi
2019-Jul-22, 11:23 AM
A good article to read. It covers China's initial moon plans and its future plans.

https://larouchepub.com/other/2019/4628-economic_development_is_at_the.html


On January 4, 2019, Eastern Standard Time, China became the first nation in the world to land a spacecraft on the far side of the Moon. Contrary to most Western media commentary, this accomplishment was not motivated by an imaginary “Asia space race,” or to obtain bragging rights in the international space community. The China Lunar Exploration Program (CLEP), made up of a series of increasingly challenging missions, is considered a key element in the economic advancement of China’s population.

selvaarchi
2019-Jul-22, 11:35 AM
"China ready to bring back some more Moon rocks"

https://cosmosmagazine.com/space/china-ready-to-bring-back-some-more-moon-rocks


Fifty years ago, when Apollo 11 blasted off from the Moon for its return to Earth, Moon-walkers Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin took with them 22 kilograms of rocks – the first in a trove of 382 kilograms that would be returned by the Apollo program in the next three years.

Since then, nobody else has walked on the Moon, and the only other samples ever brought back were 301 grams of material collected in the 1970s by a trio of Soviet missions called Luna 16, Luna 20, and Luna 24.

Early next year, however, China is poised to be the first to fill this gap, via a robotic mission designed to land on Mons Rümker, a sprawling volcanic ediface believed to contain some of the Moon’s youngest volcanic rocks.

The mission, called Chang’e 5 (CE-5), is part of China’s Chang’e program, named for the ancient Chinese goddess of the moon.

In 2018 and early 2019, CE-4 and a sister mission called Queqiao landed a rover on the far side of the Moon and positioned a communication satellite in an orbit high above the Moon’s far side, where it could relay communications from the rover back to Earth. (Radio signals cannot be beamed directly to Earth from the far side, because the Moon is in the way.)

Upcoming missions, scheduled for later in the 2020s, are intended to bring back a second sample – this one from the Moon’s south polar region – and to practise 3D printing techniques on the Moon in the hope that they can be used to help construct a permanent robotic research station, Chunlai Li of the Chinese Academy of Sciences in Beijing and colleagues wrote last week in the journal Science.