Chang'e 4Wikipedia open wikipedia design.
|Mission type||Lander, lunar rover|
|Mission duration||Lander: 12 months|
Rover: 3 months
|Launch mass||Lander: 1,200 kg|
Rover: 140 kg
|Landing mass||Total: ~1,200 kg; rover: 140 kg|
|Dimensions||Rover: 1.5 × 1.0 × 1.0 m|
|Start of mission|
|Launch date||Queqiao relay satellite: 20 May 2018|
Lander and rover: 7 December 2018, 18:23 UTC
|Rocket||Long March 3B|
|Launch site||Xichang Satellite Launch Center|
|Landing date||Lander and rover: 3 January 2019, 2:26 UTC|
|Landing site||Von Kármán crater in the South Pole-Aitken Basin|
Chang'e 4 (//; Chinese: 嫦娥四号; pinyin: Cháng'é Sìhào; literally: "Chang'e No. 4") is a Chinese lunar exploration mission that achieved the first soft landing on the far side of the Moon, on 3 January 2019. A communication relay satellite, Queqiao, was first launched to a halo orbit near the Earth-Moon L2 point in May 2018. The robotic lander and Yutu 2 (Chinese: 玉兔二号; literally :"Jade Rabbit No. 2") rover were launched on 7 December 2018 and entered orbit around the Moon on 12 December 2018.
The mission is the follow-up to Chang'e 3, the first Chinese landing on the Moon. The spacecraft was originally built as a backup for Chang'e 3 and became available after Chang'e 3 landed successfully in 2013. The configuration of Chang'e 4 was adjusted to meet new scientific objectives. Like its predecessors, the mission is named after Chang'e, the Chinese Moon goddess.
The Chinese Lunar Exploration Program is designed to be conducted in three phases of incremental technological advancement: the first is to reach lunar orbit, a task completed by Chang'e 1 in 2007 and Chang'e 2 in 2010; the second is to land and rove on the Moon, as Chang'e 3 did in 2013 and Chang'e 4 did in January 2019; the third is to collect lunar samples from the near-side and send them to Earth, a task for the future Chang'e 5 and Chang'e 6 missions. The program aims to facilitate a crewed lunar landing in the 2030s and possibly build an outpost near the south pole. The Chinese Lunar Exploration Program has started to incorporate private investment from individuals and enterprises for the first time, a move aimed at accelerating aerospace innovation, cutting production costs, and promoting military–civilian relationships.
The Chang'e 4 mission was first scheduled for launch in 2015 as part of the second phase of the Chinese Lunar Exploration Program. But the adjusted objectives and design of the mission imposed delays, and finally launched on 7 December 2018, 18:23 UTC. The spacecraft entered lunar orbit on 12 December 2018, 08:45 UTC. The orbit's perilune was lowered to 15 km (9.3 mi) on 30 December 2018, 00:55 UTC. Landing took place on 3 January 2019 at 02:26 UTC, shortly after lunar sunrise over the Von Kármán crater.
This mission will attempt to determine the age and composition of an unexplored region of the Moon, as well as develop technologies required for the later stages of the program.
According to Wu Weiren, the chief engineer of the program, the United States once requested China to provide the orbital data of Chang'e 4 to monitor its lunar landing, but it was declined by China.
An ancient collision event on the Moon left behind a very large crater, called the Aitken Basin, that is now about 13 km (8.1 mi) deep, and it is thought that the massive impactor likely exposed the deep lunar crust, and probably the mantle materials. If Chang'e 4 can find and study some of this material, it would get an unprecedented view into the Moon's internal structure and origins. The specific scientific objectives are:
- Measure the chemical compositions of lunar rocks and soils
- Measure lunar surface temperature over the duration of the mission.
- Carry out low-frequency radio astronomical observation and research using a radio telescope
- Study of cosmic rays
- Observe the solar corona, investigate its radiation characteristics and mechanism, and to explore the evolution and transport of coronal mass ejections (CME) between the Sun and Earth.
Queqiao relay satellite
Direct communication with Earth is impossible on the far side of the Moon, since transmissions are blocked by the Moon. Communications must go through a communications relay satellite, which is placed at a location that has a clear view of both the landing site and the Earth. On 20 May 2018, the China National Space Administration (CNSA) launched the Queqiao (Chinese: 鹊桥; pinyin: Quèqiáo; literally: "Magpie Bridge") relay satellite to a halo orbit around the Earth–Moon L2 point. The relay satellite is based on the Chang'e 2 design, has a mass of 425 kg (937 lb), and it uses a 4.2 m (14 ft) antenna to receive X band signals from the lander and rover, and relay them to Earth control on the S band.
The spacecraft took 24 days to reach L2, using a lunar swing-by to save fuel. On 14 June 2018, Queqiao finished its final adjustment burn and entered the L2 halo mission orbit, which is about 65,000 kilometres (40,000 mi) from the Moon. This is the first lunar relay satellite at this location.
As part of the Chang'e 4 mission, two microsatellites (45 kg or 99 lb each) named Longjiang-1 and Longjiang-2 (Chinese: 龙江; pinyin: Lóng Jiāng; literally: "Dragon River"), were launched along with Queqiao in May 2018. However, Longjiang-1 failed to enter lunar orbit, while Longjiang-2 succeeded and is currently operational in lunar orbit. These microsatellites were tasked to observe the sky at very low frequencies (1–30 MegaHertz), corresponding to wavelengths of 300 to 10 metres (984 to 33 ft), with the aim of studying energetic phenomena from celestial sources. Due to the Earth's ionosphere, no observations in this frequency range have been done in Earth orbit, offering potential breakthrough science.
Chang'e lander and Yutu-2 rover
As is the case with many of China's space missions, the details of the spacecraft and the mission have been limited. What is known is that much of the Chang'e 4 lander and rover design is modeled after Chang'e-3 and its Yutu rover. In fact, Chang'e 4 was built as a backup to Chang'e 3, and based on the experience and results from that mission, Chang'e 4 was adapted to the specifics of the new mission. The lander and rover were launched on 7 December 2018, 18:23 UTC, six months after the launch of the Queqiao relay satellite.
The total landing mass is 1,200 kg (2,600 lb). Both the stationary lander and Yutu-2 rover are equipped with a radioisotope heater unit (RHU) in order to heat their subsystems during the long lunar nights, while electrical power is generated by solar panels. After landing, the lander extended a ramp to deploy the Yutu-2 rover (literally: "Jade Rabbit") to the lunar surface. The rover measures 1.5 × 1.0 × 1.0 m (4.9 × 3.3 × 3.3 ft) and has a mass of 140 kg (310 lb). Yutu-2 rover was fabricated at Dongguan, Guangdong province; it is solar-powered, RHU-heated, and it is propelled by six wheels. The rover's nominal operating time is three months, but after the experience with Yutu rover in 2013, the rover design was improved and Chinese engineers are hopeful it will operate for "a few years."
The communications relay satellite, orbiting microsatellite, lander and rover each carry scientific payloads. The relay satellite is performing radio astronomy, whereas the lander and Yutu-2 rover will study the geophysics of the landing zone. The science payloads are, in part, supplied by international partners in Sweden, Germany, the Netherlands, and Saudi Arabia.
The primary function of the Queqiao relay satellite that is deployed in a halo orbit around the Earth–Moon L2 point is to provide continuous relay communications between Earth and the lander on the far side of the Moon.
Additionally, this satellite hosts the Netherlands-China Low-Frequency Explorer (NCLE), an instrument performing astrophysical studies in the unexplored radio regime of 80 kilohertz to 80 megahertz. It was developed by the Radboud University in Netherlands and the Chinese Academy of Sciences. The NCLE on the orbiter and the LFS on the lander will work in synergy performing low-frequency (0.1 MHz–80 MHz) radio astronomical observations.
The lander and rover carry scientific payloads to study the geophysics of the landing zone, with a modest chemical analysis capability. The lander is equipped with the following payloads:
- Landing Camera (LCAM), mounted on the bottom of the spacecraft, the camera began to produce a video stream at the height of 12 km (7.5 mi) above the lunar surface.
- Terrain Camera (TCAM), mounted on top of the lander and able to rotate 360°, is being used to image the lunar surface and the rover in high definition.
- Low Frequency Spectrometer (LFS) to research solar radio bursts at frequencies between 0.1–40 MHz and to study the lunar ionosphere.
- Lunar Lander Neutrons and Dosimetry (LND), a neutron dosimeter developed by Kiel University in Germany. It will gather radiation dosimetry for future human exploration of the Moon, and will contribute to solar wind studies.
- Lunar Micro Ecosystem, is a 3 kg (6.6 lb) sealed biosphere cylinder 18 cm (7.1 in) long and 16 cm (6.3 in) in diameter with seeds and insect eggs to test whether plants and insects could hatch and grow together in synergy. The experiment includes six types of organisms:  cottonseed, potato, rapeseed, Arabidopsis thaliana (a flowering plant), as well as yeast and fruit fly eggs. Environmental systems keep the container hospitable and Earth-like, except for the low lunar gravity and radiation. If the fly eggs hatch, the larvae would produce carbon dioxide, while the germinated plants would release oxygen through photosynthesis. It is hoped that together, the plants and fruit flies can establish a simple synergy within the container. Yeast would play a role in regulating carbon dioxide and oxygen, as well as decomposing processed waste from the flies and the dead plants to create an additional food source for the insects. The biological experiment was designed by 28 Chinese universities. Research in such closed ecological systems inform astrobiology and the development of biological life support systems for long duration missions in space stations or space habitats for eventual space farming.
- Result: Within a few hours after landing on 3 January 2019, the biosphere's temperature was adjusted to 24°C and the seeds were watered. On January 15, 2019, it was reported that cottonseed, rapeseed and potato seeds had sprouted, but images of only cottonseed were released. A miniature camera photographed the successful germination of cottonseed. However, on January 16, it was reported that the experiment was terminated due to a temperature drop to −52 °C (−62 °F) as the lunar night set in, and a failure to warm the biosphere close to 24°C. The experiment was terminated after nine days instead of the planned 100 days, but valuable information was obtained.
- Panoramic Camera (PCAM), is installed on the rover's mast and can rotate 360°. It has a spectral range of 420 nm–700 nm and it acquires 3D images by binocular stereovision.
- Lunar penetrating radar (LPR), is a ground penetrating radar with a probing depth of approximately 30 m with 30 cm vertical resolution, and more than 100 m with 10 m vertical resolution.
- Visible and Near-Infrared Imaging Spectrometer (VNIS), for imaging spectroscopy that can then be used for identification of surface materials and atmospheric trace gases. The spectral range covers visible to near-infrared wavelengths (450 nm - 950 nm).
- Advanced Small Analyzer for Neutrals (ASAN), is an energetic neutral atom analyzer provided by the Swedish Institute of Space Physics (IRF). It will reveal how solar wind interacts with the lunar surface, that may help determine the process behind the formation of lunar water.
The landing site is within a crater called Von Kármán (180 km or 110 mi diameter) in the South Pole-Aitken Basin on the far side of the Moon that was still unexplored by landers. The site has symbolic as well as scientific value. Theodore von Kármán was the PhD advisor of Qian Xuesen, the founder of the Chinese space program.
- Chinese Lunar Exploration Program
- Animals in space
- Plants in space
- Closed ecological system
- Exploration of the Moon
- List of missions to the Moon
- Luna 3, the first spacecraft to image the lunar far side
- China says it will launch 2 robots to the far side of the moon in December on an unprecedented lunar exploration mission Archived 9 December 2018 at the Wayback Machine.. Dave Mosher, Business Insider. 16 August 2018.
- Chang'e 3, 4 (CE 3, 4) Archived 20 March 2018 at the Wayback Machine.. Gunter Dirk Krebs, Gunter's Space Page.
- This is the rover China will send to the 'dark side' of the Moon Archived 31 August 2018 at the Wayback Machine.. Steven Jiang, CNN News. 16 August 2018.
- "探月工程嫦娥四号探测器成功发射 开启人类首次月球背面软着陆探测之旅". China National Space Administration (in Chinese). Archived from the original on 10 December 2018. Retrieved 8 December 2018.
- Chang'e-4: Far side of the Moon lander and rover mission to launch in December Archived 13 July 2018 at the Wayback Machine.. Global Times, 18 June 2018.
- Launch Schedule 2018 Archived 16 August 2018 at the Wayback Machine.. SpaceflightNow, 18 September 2018.
- Barbosa, Rui (3 January 2019). "China lands Chang'e-4 mission on the far side of the Moon". Nasaspacefight. Archived from the original on 3 January 2019. Retrieved 3 January 2019.
- China's Journey to the Lunar Far Side: A Missed Opportunity? Paul D. Spudis, Air & Space Smithsonian. 14 June 2017.
- Ye, Peijian; Sun, Zezhou; Zhang, He; Li, Fei (2017). "An overview of the mission and technical characteristics of Change'4 Lunar Probe". Science China Technological Sciences. 60 (5): 658. doi:10.1007/s11431-016-9034-6.
- Lyons, Kate. "Chang'e 4 landing: China probe makes historic touchdown on far side of the moon". The Guardian. Archived from the original on 3 January 2019. Retrieved 3 January 2019.
- "China successfully lands Chang'e-4 on far side of Moon". Archived from the original on 3 January 2019. Retrieved 3 January 2019.
- This map shows exactly where China landed its Chang'e-4 spacecraft on the far side of the moon Archived 4 January 2019 at the Wayback Machine.. Dave Mosherand and Shayanne Gal, Business Insider. 3 January 2019.
- China Prepares for Breakthrough Chang'e 4 Moon Landing in 2018 Archived 11 January 2018 at the Wayback Machine.. Sputnik News, 31 December 2017.
- China lays out its ambitions to colonize the moon and build a "lunar palace" Archived 29 November 2018 at the Wayback Machine.. Echo Huang, Quartz. 26 April 2018.
- China's moon mission to boldly go a step further Archived 31 December 2017 at the Wayback Machine.. Stuart Clark, The Guardian 31 December 2017.
- "China Outlines New Rockets, Space Station and Moon Plans". Space. 17 March 2015. Archived from the original on 1 July 2016. Retrieved 27 March 2015.
- "Ouyang Ziyuan portrayed Chang E project follow-up blueprint". Science Times. 9 December 2011. Archived from the original on 3 February 2012. Retrieved 25 June 2012.
- Witze, Alexandra (19 March 2013). "China's Moon rover awake but immobile". Nature. doi:10.1038/nature.2014.14906. Archived from the original on 23 March 2014. Retrieved 25 March 2014.
- China launches historic mission to land on far side of the moon Archived 7 December 2018 at the Wayback Machine. Stephen Clark, Spaceflight Now. 7 December 2018.
- "China's Chang'e-4 probe decelerates near moon". Xinhua. 12 December 2018. Archived from the original on 12 December 2018. Retrieved 12 December 2018.
- "China's Chang'e-4 probe changes orbit to prepare for moon-landing". XinhuaNet. 30 December 2018. Archived from the original on 1 January 2019. Retrieved 31 December 2018.
- Jones, Andrew (31 December 2018). "How the Chang'e-4 spacecraft will land on the far side of the Moon". GBTIMES. Archived from the original on 2 January 2019. Retrieved 3 January 2019.
- China's Moon Missions Are Anything But Pointless. Paul D. Spudis, Air & Space Smithsonian. 3 January 2017.
- "探月工程"小伙伴"越来越多" (PDF). Wen Wei Po (in Chinese). 2019-01-04.
- To the Far Side of the Moon: China's Lunar Science Goals Archived 10 March 2018 at the Wayback Machine.. Leonard David, Space. 9 June 2016.
- Wall, Mike (18 May 2018). "China Launching Relay Satellite Toward Moon's Far Side Sunday". Space.com. Archived from the original on 18 May 2018.
- Emily Lakdawalla (14 January 2016). "Updates on China's lunar missions". The Planetary Society. Archived from the original on 17 April 2016. Retrieved 24 April 2016.
- Jones, Andrew (24 April 2018). "Chang'e-4 lunar far side satellite named 'magpie bridge' from folklore tale of lovers crossing the Milky Way". GBTimes. Archived from the original on 29 April 2018. Retrieved 28 April 2018.
- Future Chinese Lunar Missions: Chang'e 4 - Farside Lander and Rover. David R. Williams, NASA Goddard Space Flight Center. 7 December 2018.
- Chang'e 4 relay satellite, Queqiao: A bridge between Earth and the mysterious lunar farside Archived 21 May 2018 at the Wayback Machine.. Xu, Luyan, The Planetary Society. 19 May 2018. Retrieved on 20 May 2018
- Xu, Luyuan (15 June 2018). "How China's lunar relay satellite arrived in its final orbit". The Planetary Society. Archived from the original on 17 October 2018.
- Radio Experiment Launches With China's Moon Orbiter. David Dickinson, Sky & Telescope. 21 May 2018.
- The scientific objectives and payloads of Chang'E−4 mission. (PDF) Yingzhuo Jia, Yongliao Zou, Jinsong Ping, Changbin Xue, Jun Yan, Yuanming Ning. Planetary and Space Science. 21 February 2018. doi:10.1016/j.pss.2018.02.011
- Chang'e-4 lunar far side mission to carry microsatellites for pioneering astronomy Archived 9 March 2018 at the Wayback Machine.. Andrew Jones, GB Times. March 2018.
- This weekend, China embarks on a historic mission to land on the far side of the Moon Archived 7 December 2018 at the Wayback Machine.. Loren Grush, The Verge. 6 December 2018.
- A Chang'e-4 mission concept and vision of future Chinese lunar exploration activities. Qiong Wang, Jizhong Liu. Acta Astronautica. Vol: 127, October-November 2016, pp: 678-683. doi:10.1016/j.actaastro.2016.06.024
- Pioneering Chang’e-4 lunar far side landing mission to launch in December. Andrew Jones, Space News. 15 August 2018.
- China Shoots for the Moon's Far Side. (PDF) IEEE.org. 2018.
- China's Chang'e 4 spacecraft to try historic landing on far side of Moon 'between January 1 and 3' Archived 2 January 2019 at the Wayback Machine.. South China Morning Post. 31 December 2018.
- Chang'e 4 Relay Archived 1 January 2018 at the Wayback Machine.. Gunter Dirk Krebs, Gunter's Space Page.
- Plans for China's farside Chang'e 4 lander science mission taking shape Archived 23 June 2016 at the Wayback Machine.. Emily Lakdawalla, The Planetary Society, 22 June 2016.
- Andrew Jones (11 January 2018). "Testing on China's Chang'e-4 lunar far side lander and rover steps up in preparation for launch". GBTimes. Archived from the original on 12 January 2018. Retrieved 12 January 2018.
- David, Leonard. "Comsat Launch Bolsters China's Dreams for Landing on the Moon's Far Side". Scientific American. Archived from the original on 29 November 2018.
- "Netherlands-China Low-Frequency Explorer (NCLE)". ASTRON. Archived from the original on 10 April 2018. Retrieved 10 April 2018.
- Andrew Jones (16 May 2016). "Sweden joins China's historic mission to land on the far side of the Moon in 2018". GBTimes. Archived from the original on 12 January 2018. Retrieved 12 January 2018.
- The Lunar Lander Neutron & Dosimetry (LND) Experiment on Chang'E4 Archived 3 January 2019 at the Wayback Machine.. (PDF) Robert F. Wimmer-Schweingruber, S. Zhang, C. E. Hellweg, Jia Yu, etal. Institut für Experimentelle und Angewandte Physik. Germany.
- Geological Characteristics of Chang'e-4 Landing Site Archived 31 May 2018 at the Wayback Machine.. (PDF) Jun Huang, Zhiyong Xiao, Jessica Flahaut, Mélissa Martinot, Xiao Xiao. 49th Lunar and Planetary Science Conference 2018 (LPI Contrib. No. 2083).
- Chinese lunar lander's cotton seeds spring to life on far side of the moon. William Zheng, South China Morning Post. 15 January 2019.
- Moon sees first cotton-seed sprout. Xinhua News. 15 January 2019.
- Change-4 Probe lands on the moon with “mysterious passenger” of CQU
- China Is About to Land Living Eggs on the Far Side of the Moon Archived 2 January 2019 at the Wayback Machine.. Yasmin Tayag, Inverse. 2 January 2019.
- Rincon, Paul (2 January 2019). "Chang'e-4: China mission primed for landing on Moon's far side". BBC News. Archived from the original on 3 January 2019. Retrieved 3 January 2019.
- Space 2018: China mission will create miniature ecosystem on Moon Archived 4 April 2018 at the Wayback Machine.. Karen Graham, Digital Journal. 6 January 2018.
- Forget the stratospheric chicken sandwich, China is sending potato seeds and silkworms to the Moon Archived 11 January 2018 at the Wayback Machine.. Andrew Jones, GB Times. 14 June 2017.
- China Focus: Flowers on the Moon? China's Chang'e-4 to launch lunar spring Archived 27 December 2018 at the Wayback Machine.. Xinhua (in English). 4 April 2018.
- Zheng, William (2019-01-15). "Chinese lunar lander's cotton seeds spring to life on far side of the moon". South China Morning Post. Retrieved 15 January 2019.
- Lunar nighttime brings end to Chang'e-4 biosphere experiment and cotton sprouts. Andrew Jones, GB Times. 16 January 2019.
- China's first plant to grow on the moon is already dead. Yong Xiong and Ben Westcott, CNN News. 17 January 2019.
- "China Plans First Ever Landing on the Lunar Far Side". Space Daily. 22 May 2015. Archived from the original on 26 May 2015. Retrieved 26 May 2015.
- "Hsue-Shen Tsien". Mathematics Genealogy Project. Archived from the original on 9 December 2018. Retrieved 7 December 2018.
- "Chang'e 4: China probe lands on far side of the moon". The Guardian. 3 January 2019. Archived from the original on 3 January 2019. Retrieved 3 January 2019.
- Chang'e-4: Chinese rover now exploring Moon Archived 4 January 2019 at the Wayback Machine.. Paul Rincon, BBC News. 4 January 2019.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Chang'e 4.|