Far side of the Moon: What China and the world hope to find

A Chinese space probe successfully touched down on the far side of the moon, state media said, hailing it as an historic first landing on a mission seen as an important step for China's space programme.
The first close-up image of the dark side of the moon taken by China's Chang'e-4 lunar probe on Jan 3, 2019.
The first close-up image of the dark side of the moon taken by China's Chang'e-4 lunar probe on Jan 3, 2019.PHOTO: XINHUA

NEW YORK • In a spaceflight first, China's Chang'e-4 has landed where no spacecraft has touched down in one piece before: The far side of the Moon.

"This is a historic step in international scientific exploration of the moon, opening up the 'Luna Incognita' of the lunar far side to surface exploration for the first time," said Dr James Head, a planetary scientist at Brown University.

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A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on January 04, 2019, with the headline 'Far side of the Moon: What China and the world hope to find'. Print Edition | Subscribe