(CTN NEWS) – China has announced its ambitious plan to land humans on the moon by 2023, using two rockets to carry the crew and the lunar module.
The plan was revealed by the China National Space Administration (CNSA) on Monday, as part of its roadmap for the next decade of lunar exploration.
According to the CNSA, China will launch a Long March 5 rocket in 2023, carrying a crewed spacecraft and a lunar orbiter.
The spacecraft will dock with the orbiter in lunar orbit, and then separate into two modules: one for the crew to stay in orbit, and one for two astronauts to descend to the lunar surface.
China’s Lunar Mission Features Advanced Modules and Astronaut Activities
The crew module will have a life support system, a communication system, and a propulsion system, while the landing module will have a landing system, a rover, and a scientific payload.
The two astronauts will spend about a week on the moon, conducting scientific experiments and exploring the lunar terrain. They will also collect lunar samples and plant a Chinese flag on the moon.
The landing module will then ascend from the moon and rendezvous with the crew module in orbit. The two modules will recombine and return to Earth together.
During a summit in the central Chinese city of Wuhan, Zhang Hailian, deputy chief engineer at the China Manned Space, revealed that after completing their scientific tasks and collecting samples, the astronauts would be transported back to the orbiting spacecraft by the lander.
They would then return to Earth aboard the spacecraft.
The competition between China and the United States in the race to send people to the moon has intensified in recent years, driven by the potential extraction of valuable mineral resources on the lunar surface.
Additionally, the establishment of lunar habitats holds the promise of supporting future crewed missions to other celestial bodies, including Mars.
China’s Lunar Mission: Backup Modules and Future Exploration Plans
The CNSA said that this plan will use two rockets instead of one, as previously proposed, to reduce the risk and increase the reliability of the mission.
The second rocket, a Long March 7, will launch in 2024, carrying a backup crew module and a backup landing module. The backup modules will be ready to replace the primary ones in case of any failure or emergency.
The CNSA also said that this plan will pave the way for future lunar missions, such as building a lunar base and mining lunar resources. China aims to establish a long-term human presence on the moon by 2030, and to cooperate with other countries in lunar exploration.
China has been steadily advancing its space program in recent years, achieving several milestones such as landing a rover on the far side of the moon in 2019, and sending an unmanned probe to Mars in 2020.
In an ambitious move, China has announced its plan to land humans on the moon by 2023, utilizing two rockets for the mission. The China National Space Administration (CNSA) unveiled this plan as part of its roadmap for the next decade of lunar exploration.
The mission involves a crewed spacecraft and a lunar orbiter, with separate modules for crew accommodation and lunar surface exploration.
The crew module will be equipped with essential systems, while the landing module will carry a rover and scientific payload. The astronauts will conduct scientific experiments, explore the moon’s terrain, and collect samples, leaving behind a Chinese flag.
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