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New images provide wealth of scientific information


04-25-2016 05:40 BJT

Full coverage: China Astronautics Day

Ahead of National Space Day, China unveiled a set of high-resolution full-color pictures of the moon, revealing a wealth of details about the lunar surface.

The images show an array of impact craters and rocks, and provide a large amount of scientific information.  They were taken by China's Chang'e-3 moon lander and the Yutu rover, which landed on the moon on December 14, 2013. By examining the wheel track of the rover and how deep the lander's feet are buried, scientists can learn the maximum load the moon surface can support. They can also deduce many physical properties of the soil, such as its density.

The lander's mission marked China's first successful soft-landing on the surface of an extraterrestrial body. The lunar probe is tasked with surveying the moon's geological structure and surface. It is also looking for natural resources.

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