Chinese rover powers up devices in pioneering moon mission

Yutu 2 leaving track marks as it begins to explore the surface of the far side of the moon

Yutu 2 leaving track marks as it begins to explore the surface of the far side of the moon

Since the moon blocks direct communications, China had to first put a satellite in orbit to relay signals.

"It is human nature to explore the unknown world".

The Yutu-2 rover. Image credit: CNSA. Wu Weiren, chief designer of the lunar exploration project, told the state broadcaster CCTV: "This giant leap is a decisive move for our exploration of space and the conquering of the universe".

Named after the pet rabbit belonging to the mythical Chinese lunar goddess Chang'e, the Yutu 2 rover is making history as it sends back images and other data from the far side of the moon.

The Yutu 2 rover moving farther across the moon's surface. It has 6 wheels, two solar panels, and a dish antenna.

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China's far-side moon rover is already busy exploring its exotic new home.

"The Chang'e-4 probe, comprised of a robotic lander and a rover, touched down at the preselected landing area at 177.6 degrees east longitude and 45.5 degrees south latitude on the far side of the Moon at 10:26 a.m. Beijing Time", Chang'e-4 team members said.

China on Thursday landed its Chang'e 4 spacecraft on the moon's far side - also known, mistakenly, as the "dark side" - which no nation had done before.

The first photos from the landing, shared by the China National Space Administration on Thursday, show the first close-ups of the far side of the moon's cratered surface.

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