New Moon mystery revealed by Chinese lunar far side mission

Exploring the surface of the moon should perhaps be one of the most important goals if mankind really wants to reach the stars and go where no humans have ever been.

If we really want to colonize the solar system, you start off with Earth and its moon.

Creating sustainable colonies on the lunar surface will be one of the greatest accomplishments in human history.

It will be a launchpad for our civilization that will allow us to travel beyond Mars, into the solar system, and perhaps one day, even beyond.

This was understood by the Chinese, while Russia and the United States are debating over who’s got the bigger stick.

Chinses scientists know that the moon is of great importance and that colonizing it will kick start a new space race.

That’s why the China National Space Administration (CNSA) is doing its best to explore the moon.

Their success is already unmatched.

Recently, they performed the first soft-landing in human history on the far side of the moon.

Thanks to the Chang’e 4 mission, mankind is exploring the surface of the far side of the moon while making new discoveries along the way.

The lander, Chang’e 4 is working flawlessly and getting ready to provide us with unprecedented details about the moon’s surface, its interior, as well as exterior.

In addition to the lander, there’s also a miniature rover on the moon’s far side: Yutu-2 or Jade Rabbit.

The miniature robotic vehicle is exploring the surface of the far side of the moon, as well as taking new images of its surrounding landscape.

Both the rover and lander are located inside the 180-kilometer-wide Von Kármán crater, in the southern hemisphere on the far side of the Moon.

The crater is located within an even larger impact crater dubbed by scientists as the South Pole–Aitken basin and is around 2,500 km (1,600 mi) in diameter, as well as 13 km (8.1 mi) deep.

Both the lander and rover have gathered a treasure trove of unprecedented data, and recently, they’ve uncovered a new lunar mystery.

To the surprise of many, the Chang’e 4 mission has found that night-time temperatures on the surface of the far side are much colder than previously thought.

As revealed by the CNSA, Temperatures on the moon’s surface have plummeted to a freezing minus 190 degrees Celsius (-310 degrees Fahrenheit) during the probe’s first lunar night.

This “was colder than scientists expected.”

The temperature reading was picked up by the Chinese lander after having woken from its hibernation.

Curiously, the freezing temps were found to be lower than what other lunar missions have uncovered on the opposite side of the moon, on the near side.

And while scientists are still unsure as to the exact reason why it is much colder on the far side of the moon, Chinese experts believe the composition of the surface may play an important role in the temperature on the far side.

“That’s probably due to the difference in lunar soil composition between the two sides of the moon,” CNSA’s Dr. Zhang He told Xinhua news.

This means that there’s something in the soil on the far side of the moon (where the lander touched down) that’s causing the lunar terrain to retain less heat at night.

Further observations will take place as both the Rover and Lander remain in excellent conditions.

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