The safe return of China’s Chang’e-5 returner on Earth successfully carried valuable lunch samples. But what ever happened to the Chang’e-5 ascender, lander and orbiter?
To reveal more details and stories behind the Chang’e-5 mission, CGTN spoke to Professor Yang Yuguang, vice chairman of the Space Transport Committee at the International Astronautical Federation, in a live interview Friday.
Click here to review the interview.
After moving the lunar specimens, the ascender used the rest propellants to reduce the height and fell on the lunar surface.
“We removed the ascender to let him fall. This is so he doesn’t waste space or affect other missions in the future,” the professor said.
Similarly, after separation from the returnee, the orbiter made an orbiter movement “to avoid collision with the returnee,” and “was disinfected into the atmosphere and fired. mach. “
Unlike the ascender and the orbiter, the lawyer, whose task ended after the ascent takes off, “permanently resides at his landing site” on the north side of the Mons Rumker. the Oceanus Procellarum, also known as the Ocean of Storms, on the side near the moon, Yang said.
Interestingly, a U.S. robotic spacecraft orbiting the moon, called a Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter (LRO), has photographed the surface using its high-resolution cameras, he said.
Samples collected in two ways
The professor also shared more details about the two methods Chang’e-5 collected lunar samples – drilling from being under the lunar surface and scouring the surface.
As the lunar environment is rigid, drilling and scouring, two different armed stages of different technologies, underpin each other.
“If one of them failed, we still had a chance with the other,” Yang explained.
In terms of scientific research, samples collected in both ways are useful in helping scientists to experience the history of the moon.
“The soil is under the influence of the solar wind and also the high and low temperatures of the moon. So much information is damaged. If we can drill deep below the surface, we get original examples,” Yang said.
Beneath the surface of the moon, there are different layers of soil, and the “layer of layers is a very useful information” because different layers respond to different times.
Solar winds also have a significant effect on the topsoil.
“Studying the effects of solar wind and the lunar surface environment is important to the Earth, and useful for us to build a lunar foundation in the future,” Yang said.
When drilling for the samples, Chang’e-5 used a stick of two colors. The bottom of the stick is black and the rest is white.
“This type of design is not for good looks, but for dealing with different drill situations,” Yang explained. “We don’t know how hard the soil is, so we have to make the stick hard enough. The black part is made of a very hard material.”
However, “every gram is valuable,” so a different material is used to reduce weight, and that’s the white part.