China Has Landed On The Moon


china rocket space

REUTERS/China Daily

The Long March-3B rocket carrying the Chang'e-3 lunar probe blasts off from the launch pad at Xichang Satellite Launch Center, Sichuan province December 2, 2013. The Chang'e-3 lunar probe comprises a lander and a moon rover called "Yu Tu" (Jade Rabbit) which will be deployed to explore the surface of the moon.


SHANGHAI (Reuters) - A Chinese spacecraft landed on the moon on Saturday, the official Xinhua news service reported, in the first such "soft-landing" since 1976, joining the United States and the former Soviet Union in managing to accomplish such a feat.

The Chang'e 3, a probe named after a lunar goddess in traditional Chinese mythology, is carrying the solar-powered Yutu, or Jade Rabbit rover, which will dig and conduct geological surveys.

In China's most recent manned space mission in June, three astronauts spent 15 days in orbit and docked with an experimental space laboratory, part of Beijing's quest to build a working space station by 2020.

(Reporting by Pete Sweeney)


More to come.