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Chang'e Deploys Jade Rabbit (...no, that's not gibberish) [Dec. 16th, 2013|11:38 pm]

China's spacecraft Chang'e has made a successful soft landing on the moon and deployed the Jade Rabbit rover. This is the first time we've had a soft landing and, I think, the first rover on the moon since the Lunokhod rovers from the space race. (They were awesome constructions in a cool retro-future way [pic].)

This is a superb accomplishment for China's space program, moving swiftly from orbital shots to a lunar landing. I would be tempted to say "they're going places" if they just hadn't literally demonstrated it.

Source: BBC News story

[User Picture]From: kj_roo
2013-12-17 02:27 pm (UTC)
*wonders if they'll draw a gentleman's sausage too*
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[User Picture]From: nicodemusrat
2013-12-17 03:17 pm (UTC)
Their rover technology is not yet perfected. Give them time! :)
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[User Picture]From: shockwave77598
2013-12-18 10:33 pm (UTC)
A small one :)
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[User Picture]From: henriekeg
2013-12-18 10:28 am (UTC)
Thanks for posting about it! I've been tweeting about it multiple times and I'm annoyed by how little news coverage it's getting! It was on the evening news in the Netherlands (with the launch, the landing and the first good video footage), not a word was mentioned on the Austrian news though. And the part that annoys me the most is how NASA tweets multiple times per day, always congratulates ESA whenever they have a successful launch, but did not mention ANYTHING about this whole amazing project.
First moon landing in 37 years? HELLOOOO!?
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[User Picture]From: nicodemusrat
2013-12-19 03:50 am (UTC)
No kidding! I was amazed at how little mention it warranted here. It did show up in a couple outlets but not much. A rover on the moon, people! It's the future!

Granted, I also cynically expected we'd have a bit of patriotic drumbeating about how "we were there first and we could totally go back if we really wanted to, so there, harumph." But that still would've been news coverage to get people talking about space a bit. Ah well.
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[User Picture]From: porsupah
2013-12-21 06:43 pm (UTC)
It's certainly been doing rather well so far! Hopefully this bodes well for China's manned exploration ambitions, although that's still a few years off. And then there's Mars.. there'll be some serious tech development required to make that possible as a mission with a return journey, but so worthwhile. I just hope all the international partners involved can maintain their will toward such an expensive adventure, given NASA's budget seems to be getting throttled. (And Australia's leadership seems similarly hell-bent on a tech-free future)
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