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China’s lunar mission returns safely with space bounty China’s lunar mission returns safely with space bounty
China’s Chang’e-5 moon mission has returned safely to terra firma with the planet’s first lunar sample in more than four decades. China has said... China’s lunar mission returns safely with space bounty

China’s Chang’e-5 moon mission has returned safely to terra firma with the planet’s first lunar sample in more than four decades. China has said it would share its findings with the global scientific community.

The 23-day mission was a success after the Chang’e-5’s return capsule landed in the freezing deserts of Inner Mongolia on 17 December, according to Chinese state media agency, Xinhua.

China’s fifth lunar mission, Chang’e-5, was named after the ancient Chinese moon goddess. The historic launch took place at the Wenchang Spacecraft Launch site in late November.

The Chang’e-5  moon lander unfurled a Chinese flag and will stay on the moon’s surface permanently. The lander was used as a launchpad for the return mission, assisting the return capsule’s voyage home.

President of the People’s Republic of China, Xi Jinping, said the lunar mission marked a significant leap forward for his nation’s space programme and the knowledge gleaned from the lunar samples would help deepen mankind’s understanding of the solar system.

Around two kilograms of lunar materials were recovered by the Chang’e-5’s robotic drill. Retrieved from the Mons Rumker region of the moon’s surface, the sample is much younger than those brought home by the US and the Soviets in the 1970s. Scientists are hopeful the new lunar specimens will provide some insight into the history of our place in the Milky Way.

Wu Yanhua, deputy director of China’s National Space Administration (CNSA), said while most of the soil sample would be studied by CNSA researchers, China would give portions of the precious lunar dirt to the United Nations and several unnamed nations. He said some of the sample would be made available to the international scientific community.

Wu said ‘outer space resources are the common wealth of all mankind’.

CNSA has outlined plans to send a crewed mission to the moon by the decade’s end with plans to build a permanent research station on the lunar surface. 

https://www.scmp.com/news/china/science/article/3114252/change-5-lunar-mission-returns-earth-after-collecting-moon

https://www.scmp.com/news/china/science/article/3114398/change-5-china-says-it-will-share-its-lunar-samples-global

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