China announced on Saturday that it will launch its next lunar mission, Chang’e 6, in 2024, to land and collect samples in an area on the far side of the moon that has long intrigued scientists.
According to the Communist Party’s official China Daily newspaper, the Chinese Space Administration said the project “has made smooth progress so far and has been meticulously planned.”
The mission will consist of several components, including a spacecraft that will remain in orbit, a lunar module that will land in the Antarctic-Itkin Basin, an elevator and a reentry module.
One of the key developments for this mission will be the launch of the Queqiao 2 satellite, scheduled for launch in the first half of 2024, to facilitate communication between the Chang’e 6 probe and Earth, ensuring efficient data transmission.
If the mission succeeds, it will be the first time samples have been obtained from the far side of the moon, which could reveal valuable information about the satellite’s history.
In addition to its scientific importance, Chang’e 6 will carry international cargo on board its spacecraft and lunar module, which includes 10 kilograms of foreign equipment.
France, Italy and the European Space Agency will contribute scientific instruments, while Pakistan will provide the payload.
China’s newest lunar probe, Chang’e 5, traveled to the satellite in 2020, collecting 1,731 grams of soil samples.
In recent years, China’s space program has achieved several successes, such as landing the Chang’e 4 probe on the far side of the moon — an unprecedented achievement — and placing a probe on Mars, becoming the third country — after the United States and the former Soviet Union. — To do that.
China also completed a permanent space station last year, the culmination of more than a decade of efforts to maintain a continuous crew presence in orbit.
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