China names the date for dark side moon landing

2018 is when the propaganda and science will flow

China will see you on the dark side of the moon

China has let it be known its Chang'e-4 lander will touch down on the dark side of the moon some time in 2018.

State-directed organ Xinhua reports that the State Administration of Science, Technology and Industry for National Defense has picked the year after next for its landing.

Chang'e-4 will land on the dark side and stay there to conduct geological investigations. The craft is billed as “very similar to Chang'e-3 in structure but can handle more payload.”

Hopefully not too similar: the “Jade Rabbit” lander dispatched on Chang'e-3 experienced a mechanical control abnormality and then broke down completely after only a couple of months' operations.

The Xinhua report also mentions plans for Chang'e-5, a mission that will land on Luna and then return to Terra Firma, but doesn't offer a launch date. ®




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