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China’s ambitious lunar mission Chang’e-5 RETURNS with Moon specimens

China’s ambitious lunar mission Chang’e-5 has returned back to Earth with a cargo of rock and soil it picked up from the surface of the Moon.

The capsule carrying the materials landed in Inner Mongolia shortly after 01:30 local time on Thursday.

With this successful pick-up China became the first nation retrieve samples from Earth’s natural satellite since the 1970s.




The Chang’e-5 probe’s – named after the ancient Chinese goddess of the Moon – collection of new specimens that can help scientists understand more about the moon’s origins and formation; basically insight on the geology and early history of Earth’s satellite.

The remote complex mission deployed a pair of vehicles to the surface – a lander will drill into the ground, then transfer its soil and rock samples to an ascender that will lift off and dock with an orbiting module.

For China, the successful completion of the Chang’e-5 venture will also be seen as another demonstration of the nation’s increasing capability in space.



The Chang’e-5 mission may also help answer questions such as how long the moon remained volcanically active in its interior and when its magnetic field – key to protecting any form of life from the sun’s radiation – dissipated.

Apart from collecting about 2 kilogram of dust from the Moon, the Chang’e-5 mission also hoisted the nation’s flag on the surface of the Moon.

Chang’e-6, 7 and 8 missions through the 2020s and expanded through the 2030s ahead of manned landings.

China plans to retrieve samples from Mars by 2030.