The Chinese probe, which collected samples of the lunar surface, successfully docked with the spacecraft in orbit of the moon. Materials should arrive on Earth in mid-December.
For the first time in history, a Chinese robotic probe docked in lunar orbit. The device has already received materials collected on the surface of the Earth’s satellite. They will return to researchers in mid-December.
In the coming days, the ascender will be dropped, and the orbiter will launch its engines to transport the capsule back to Earth.
As the researchers clarified, the collected samples were successfully transferred from the take-off module to the orbiter module, which will return to Earth. This is the most difficult stage in the entire mission. It differs from similar maneuvers in similar missions in that it was carried out in a circumlunar orbit. If the materials can be returned to Earth, this will happen for the first time since 1976.
Earlier, Change 5, a Chinese unmanned reentry mission to explore the moon, landed on an Earth satellite. As planned, the device landed near Mount Rumkera, located in the northeastern part of the Ocean of Storms. It was reported by the China National Space Administration (CNSA) and state news channel CGTN.
Change 5 immediately deployed its solar array and antenna to begin work. If all goes according to plan, the device will spend the next few days collecting 2kg of lunar material, some of which it will dig up to 2m below the lunar surface. After that, the take-off vehicle, which enters the mission, must send a payload to the module, send it to Earth.