China's ambitious space program launched a survey Friday "Chang's 4" with whom he tries to become First nation land on the dark side of the Moon. The ship, named after the mythical goddess of the Moon, was placed in orbit from the space center Xichang, in the west of the country.
The probe will land for approximately two weeks in the catchment area Aitken, on the southern pole of the natural satellite, where it will take samples of the surface and soil.
The explorer is equipped with a low-frequency radio spectrometer that helps scientists understand "how the first stars were lit and how our universe appeared in the dark after the Big Bang."
Probe too will have a can of seeds of potatoes and arabidopsis, a small flower plant related to cabbage and mustard. Scientists will test whether the plants grow on the moon.
The biggest challenge will be to create a communication with the hidden face of the Moon, which can never be seen from the Earth and unreachable by a direct signal, explains Professor Ouyang Ziyuan, director of the Chinese Lunar Program. "We will be just as deaf and blind"he said.
If the mission passes successfully, China will become the first country to land on the hidden side of Earth.
In May China launched the satellite "Queqiao", which aims to transfer information between Earth and "Changes" 4.
While other countries are reducing their space programs, China has great ambition including the preparation of its own space station in 2022, landing on Mars in 2020 and sending mission to Jupiter in 2029.
An Asian giant also wants to continue exploring the Moon and next year he could launch a mission to bring moon stones to Earth. According to Beijing's plans in 2030, the first Chinese will land on the satellite.
The United States sent 12 astronauts to the Moon between 1969 and 1972. The Soviet probe "Luna 24" arrived on the satellite in 1976 and 37 years later came Chinese "Changes 3".