Get PJ Media on your Apple

PJM Lifestyle

Red Star on the Moon

China has become the third nation to land a spacecraft on the moon.

by
Rick Moran

Bio

December 16, 2013 - 4:00 pm

shutterstock_54431047

China has become the third nation to land a spacecraft on the moon. It was the first soft landing of a probe on the moon in nearly 40 years.

NBC News:

The achievement marked the next stage in an ambitious space program that aims to eventually put a Chinese astronaut on the moon.

The unmanned Chang’e 3 lander, named after a mythical Chinese goddess of the moon, touched down on Earth’s nearest neighbor following a 12-minute landing process.

The probe carried a six-wheeled moon rover called Yutu, or “Jade Rabbit,” the goddess’ pet in the myth. Within hours of its landing on a fairly flat, Earth-facing part of the moon, the rover was slated to separate from the Chang’e lander and embark on a three-month scientific exploration.

The achievement marked the next stage in an ambitious space program that aims to eventually put a Chinese astronaut on the moon.

The unmanned Chang’e 3 lander, named after a mythical Chinese goddess of the moon, touched down on Earth’s nearest neighbor following a 12-minute landing process.

The probe carried a six-wheeled moon rover called Yutu, or “Jade Rabbit,” the goddess’ pet in the myth. Within hours of its landing on a fairly flat, Earth-facing part of the moon, the rover was slated to separate from the Chang’e lander and embark on a three-month scientific exploration.

China’s military-backed space program has made methodical progress in a relatively short time, although it lags far behind the United States and Russia in technology and experience.

China sent its first astronaut into space in 2003, becoming the third nation after Russia and the United States to achieve manned space travel independently. In 2007, it sent its first probe to the moon, named Chang’e 1. A follow-up mission, called Chang’e 2, was launched to study the moon in 2010, and then left lunar orbit to make a close flyby of the asteroid Toutatis in 2012.

China plans to open a space station around 2020 and send an astronaut to the moon after that.

Space entrepreneur Dennis Wingo sees more to the Chinese space program than mere nationalistic pride:

China is spending billions on resource acquisition in Africa, South America and other places around the world,” he told FoxNews.com. “If you look at the design of their system for this mission, it is very much a mineral prospector as much as a science mission.”

The strong possibility that there is water on the moon in the form of near-crystallized ice located in craters at the lunar poles opens up exciting possibilities for permanent mining operations on earth’s satellite. Water is not only vital for cooling machinery and drinking, it’s oxygen molecules can be separated to make breathable air. The hydrogen can be extracted and when combined with small amounts of other elements, an efficient fuel for rockets, vehicles, and machinery — methane — can be created.

In short, any viable, self-sustaining mining colony can be profitable if water ice existing on the moon can be tapped and the resource exploited. China is going to have a head start on private US companies who also have been eying the moon for its minerals.

NASA is not going back to the moon, which is as it should be. From here on out, the space “race” is for those who seek to gather the riches that can be found out there. Our government has no interest in joining this race, and NASA is better suited to helping facilitate the private space industry’s development of hardware that will assist us in the commercial exploitation of resources on the moon and elsewhere.

*******

Cross-posted from the PJ Tatler

image illustration courtesy shutterstock / Bruce Rolff

Rick Moran is PJ Media's Chicago editor and Blog editor at The American Thinker. He is also host of the"RINO Hour of Power" on Blog Talk Radio. His own blog is Right Wing Nut House.

Comments are closed.

All Comments   (2)
All Comments   (2)
Sort: Newest Oldest Top Rated
my father in law recently got an almost new red Toyota Avalon Hybrid only from part-time off a computer... Visit Website >>>>> http://ow.ly/qjkbU
17 weeks ago
17 weeks ago Link To Comment
However, the cultural reaction (or non-reaction) in America to this event has been illustrating. In 1957, the launch of Sputnik 1 set off a national panic in the United States, resulting in a crash program to ensure that our children got a good education in science, math, and engineering. Nowdays, these subjects are ignored, if not outright dissed, by our public education system, and the national reaction is a collective yawn. I can't help but wonder how many young potential scientists and engineers in other countries are now seeing China, and not the United States, as humanity's future.
17 weeks ago
17 weeks ago Link To Comment
View All