Stunning Image Of Moon's Rear Side Captured By Chinese Satellite

The last time a human set foot on the moon was in 1972. Image credit- Pexels licensed under CC0

The last time a human set foot on the moon was in 1972. Image credit- Pexels licensed under CC0

More info at - Dwingeloo Telescoop (@radiotelescoop) February 4, 2019 Cees Bassa of CAMRAS writes: After a radio-quiet period to avoid interfering with the Chang'e 4 Lunar landing, [Longjiang-2] became active again on 13 January 2019.

However, it lost its twin satellite Longjiang-1 in May 2018 when it spun off and lost contact with the Chinese National Space Administration on Earth.

Earlier photos showed off the Moon with the Moon in the foreground, reminiscent of NASA's Apollo missions. For the first time, China's Longjiang-2 satellite photographed the entirety of the Moon's far side and the Earth in a single shot, Popular Mechanics reports. Longjiang-2 captured this photo during the new moon, when the Earth-facing side of the moon was completely dark and the far side was entirely illuminated instead. Each day and night on the Moon lasts about two Earth-weeks.

Longjiang-2 beams photos of the moon back to Earth via the Dwingeloo Radio Observatory in the Netherlands, where astronomers have volunteered to help China's space agency receive the images using the observatory's super-sensitive radio antenna. The Verge explains that this probe was launched into space along with Queqiao satellite, which was critical for the recent landing of Chang'e 4 spacecraft. "That's probably due to the difference in lunar soil composition between the two sides of the moon. We still need more careful analysis". Earth's moon is the largest, in proportion to its parent planet, of any moon of any of the eight major planets in the Solar System. Before Chang'e-4, China launched Chang'e-3, the first probe from the country to soft-land on the satellite, back in 2013. Still, the lander continues to operate despite having experienced over 60 lunar nights in the span of five years.

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