China is determined to become a major player in the space field. It has revolutionary ideas in space exploration. One example is the idea of exploring new areas of the lunar surface. China has launched its Chang’e-4 mission to collect data on the dark side of the moon. So far, no one has made such an attempt. Its space probe Tianwen-1 is currently in orbit around the Red Planet and will land on Mars in May or June. China launched the five-ton spacecraft in July from the Wenchang Cosmodrome and it is currently carrying out its planned missions. While the UAE reported the event live, China preferred not to announce it until after the event.
It must choose a suitable place to land on the planet. To do that, it will conduct explorations. Tianwen-1’s potential landing site is a flat plain in the Utopia Basin, north of the Martian equator.
The successful entry of Tianwen-1 into orbit is proof that China is developing at a rapid pace. America already has its robots on Mars, and China may become a force to be reckoned with. It has proven its prowess with its recent actions on the moon. In December, China took rock and soil samples from the lunar surface. The analysis of these samples will help us learn more about the moon.
China’s mission to Mars
Amateur radio operators followed the events surrounding the Tianwen-1 mission. They were able to listen for signals from Chinese spacecraft and mark each milestone as they entered orbit.
The landing will come later. In addition, China adapted the American methodology for its successful Vikings in the mid-1970s. The idea was to put the robot into orbit before sending it down. The Chinese rover is similar to the NASA rover. It weighs 240 kg and has solar cells that produce the electricity it needs. It is a form of renewable energy that is needed on the moon and Mars.
In fact, a combination of artificial intelligence, robotics and solar power is needed to operate in remote locations millions of miles away.
China has set targets for Tianwen-1.
It mentions the equipment aboard the rover. Cameras would be available to capture the desired scenes. They have high and medium resolution, and their results would be useful for a better understanding of the Red Planet.
A number of instruments are available to assess the mineralogy of local rocks. Tianwen-1 will also search for traces of water ice. The purpose of the ground-penetrating radar on board is to try to detect geological layers at different depths. In December, China raised its flag on the moon as part of the Chang’e-5 mission.
The Tianwen-1 probe took seven months to reach Mars.
As reported by CNN, China’s Tianwen-1 probe has entered orbit around the Red Planet, bringing it closer to Mars. China becomes the sixth country in history to reach the Red Planet. According to the Chinese space agency CNSA, the Tianwen-1 probe (meaning “search for celestial truth”) consists of an orbiter, a lander and a rover. It rests on six wheels and contains a number of scientific instruments.
The spacecraft is expected to land on the surface of Mars in May or June. The only countries that have landed spacecraft on this alien surface are the United States and the former Soviet Union. Now China could be third. In fact, China already made an attempt in 2011. It was launched from Kazakhstan in November of that year, but without success. Since then, the situation has changed, with President Xi Jinping at the helm. China has invested heavily in the space program. The government is prioritizing it and plans to build a permanent space station by 2022. It also plans to send astronauts to the moon.
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