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Chang’e 6 Returns with Samples from Moon’s Far Side

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China’s Chang’e 6 robotic mission has returned scientifically precious samples from the moon’s far side to Earth for the first time.

The Chang’e 6 mission, representing the world’s first attempt at bringing back samples from the moon’s far side to Earth, was launched by a Long March 5 heavy-lift carrier rocket on 3 May from the Wenchang Space Launch Center in Hainan province.

The landing marked the second time a spacecraft had ever arrived in the lunar far side.

The vast region had never been reached by any spacecraft until January 2019, when the Chang’e 4 probe landed in the South Pole-Aitken Basin. The Chang’e 4 surveyed areas surrounding its landing site but did not collect and send back samples.

The Chang’e 6 lander worked 49 hours on the lunar far side, using a mechanical arm and a drill operated to collect surface and underground materials. Also, several scientific equipment were activated to conduct survey and analysis assignments.

After completing the tasks, the sample-loaded ascender lifted off from the lunar surface and reached lunar orbit to dock with the reentry capsule to transfer the samples.

In the final leg of the mission, the orbiter and the reentry capsule flew back to Earth orbit before separating on Tuesday.

Read more on this adventure by clicking HERE.

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