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China has built an artificial moon like facility to test tech made for lunar surface

China has built an artificial moon like facility to test tech made for lunar surface
  • China’s new research facility dubbed ‘artificial moon’ can create low gravity levels similar to the lunar surface.
  • This is done through magnetism and the effect is said to last for “as long as you want.”
  • China plans to test out experiments in this research facility and see if they’re fit for actual lunar travel.
China has built an artificial moon research facility that is capable of lowering the gravity level using magnetism. The idea is to make gravity “disappear” by using powerful magnetic fields inside a 60cm vacuum chamber. The research facility is scheduled to officially launch later this year.

To make the artificial moon facility feel more like the lunar surface, it will be filled with rocks and dust. China plans to use this research facility to test out instruments and technology in a low-gravity environment similar to that of the moon, and see whether its experiments can be successful on the lunar surface. The research facility is also expected to help in determining the possibility of human settlement on the moon.

According to Li Ruilin, a geotechnical engineer at the China University of Mining and Technology, the low-gravity levels in the chamber can last for “as long as you want.” And this research facility is also said to be the first of its kind in the world.

Chinese scientists drew inspiration from the experiment of making a frog float with a magnet which was devised by Andre Geim, a physicist at the University of Manchester in the U.K.

China has an ongoing moon mission called the “Chinese Lunar Exploration Program” under which its current rover and lander Chang'e 4 is exploring the lunar surface. The rover recently made history by detecting water in real time on the moon. China also plans to launch a lunar research station on the moon’s south pole by 2029.

Not just an artificial moon but China has successfully created an “artificial sun” which is a nuclear fusion reactor that superheated to a temperature five times hotter than the sun and for over 17 minutes. This artificial sun will eventually help create the source of near-unlimited clean energy to power cities.

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