The release was broadcast live by the national broadcaster CCTV, which later switched to computer animation, showing its progress in space.
Usually the secret administration had earlier confirmed that there would be a launch in late November. It usually takes three days for the spacecraft to reach the moon.
According to NASA, the main mission is to drill 2 meters below the surface of the moon and bring about 2 kilograms of rocks and other debris to Earth. This will provide scientists with the first opportunity to study newly discovered lunar objects after their American and Russian voyages in the 1960s and 1970s.
Song 5 lander time on the moon will be shorter and sweeter. It can only be on a lunar day or about 14 Earth days because there are no radioisotope heating units to withstand the moon’s frost nights.
The lander will dig into the objects with its drill and robotic arm and convert them into ascending order, which will dock with the service capsule lifted from the moon. The materials are then moved back to the capsule to be carried to Earth.
The technical complexity of the Song 5, with its four components, “makes it significant in many ways,” said John Johnson-Freese, an astronaut at the U.S. Navy College of War.
“China is showing itself to develop and successfully implement sustainable high-tech projects that are important for regional influence and global partnership,” he said.
In particular, the ability to collect samples from space is growing in value, said Jonathan McDowell, an astronomer at the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astronomy. He said other countries planning to retrieve objects from meteorites or Mars could look at China’s experience.
It will be deposited by capsule in South Australia as it is a few days away from the asteroid models recovered by the Japanese space agency satellite Hayapusa-2. This option conducts a flying journey of the Earth before proceeding to Earth through the solar system.
Although the Chinese mission is “really challenging”, McDowell said China has already landed twice on the moon with its Chang 3 and Chang 4 missions, and the Chang 5 test mission in 2014 showed that it could go back to Earth, land back and land a capsule. The rest is to show that it can collect samples and retrieve them from the moon.
“As a result, I am very confident that China can pull this off,” he said.
This mission has been a bold one for China since it first launched a man into space in 2003, making it the only third country after the United States and Russia to do so.
Although China’s many space travel achievements, including the creation of a test space station and the running of a space orbit, have been reproduced by other countries over the years, the Chinese National Space Administration is now moving into new frontiers.
Song 4 – which made the first soft landing on the moon’s relatively unexplored distance nearly two years ago – is currently collecting full measurements of radiation exposure from the lunar surface, important information for any country planning to send astronauts to the moon.
China was one of three countries that embarked on a voyage to Mars in July, with an orbit and a rover in the case of China looking for signs of water on the red planet. CNSA says Tianwen 1 spacecraft is scheduled to reach Mars in February.
China is increasingly involved in travel with foreign countries, and the European space agency will provide important ground station information for Chang5.
However, except for China’s partnership with the International Space Station, US law prohibits most cooperation with NASA. It seeks China to start work on its own space station and launch its own projects that have created a constant competition with Japan and India, gaining new achievements in space among Asian countries.
China’s space program has progressed cautiously, with some setbacks in recent years. The rocket used for the current launch failed in the previous launch attempt, but since then has operated without a hitch, including launching the Chang 4.
“China operates at a very high level, building construction modules for long-term use for a wide variety of tasks,” Fries-Johnson said. China’s one-party dictatorship allows “often difficult long-term political will in democracies.”
Experts say that although the United States is closely following China’s victories, it is not possible to expand cooperation with China in space amid political skepticism, sharp military rivalries and allegations of China’s technological theft.
“A change in US policy on space cooperation is unlikely to attract government attention in the future,” Johnson-Fries said.