The Chang’e-3 lunar probe has been launched by China, in addition to the country’s first moon rover aboard on December 2, 2013. The latest mission represents an important step toward the country’s deep exploration into space.
The new carrier is an enhanced Long March-3B rocket, which was launched from the Xichang Satellite Launch Center, located in southwest China at 1:30 am. The Chang’e-3 should land on the moon during mid-December 2013 and will become the country’s first spacecraft to soft land on the surface. In addition to that, it is also the first moon lander blasted off in the 21st century.
Zhang Zhenzhong, the director of the launch center in Xichang said, “The probe has already entered the designated orbit. I now announce the launch was successful.” Zhang went on to say that they will now strive for their space dream as part of the country’s dream of national revitalization. The Chinese Academy of Sciences started a microblog account for the latest mission, which managed to attract over 260,000 fans who kept posting congratulatory comments.
The microblog account has been opened in order to promote the mission among the public. The soft-landing of the probe is the most challenging task during the mission and this will be a major achievement for China to realise a zero distance observation and survey on the moon.
Photo Credits: China Daily