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Chang'e
Chang'e 1
Chang'e 1
Chang'e 1 model exhibited at UN exhibit, Vienna, 2011
Credit: © Mark Wade
Chinese unmanned lunar orbiter. Originally announced in March 2003 with the first spacecraft to reach the moon by the end of 2005. Lunar lander and rover satellite built by CAST, China. Launched 2013.

Status: Operational 2013. First Launch: 2013-12-01. Last Launch: 2013-12-01. Number: 1 . Gross mass: 3,780 kg (8,330 lb).

Ouyang Ziyuan announced the Chang'e Program (then still awaiting government approval), named after the Chinese legend about a young fairy that flew to the moon. Luan Enjie, Director of the China National Space Administration, announced China that China would finish the first phase of the Chang'e Program by 2010

Chang'e would consist of three phases or robotic spacecraft:

  • Lunar orbiters, which would map the surface in three dimensions. They would also analyze the content and distribution of useful elements on the lunar surface, measure the density of lunar soil, and monitor the near-moon space environment

  • Wheeled rovers, which would roam the lunar surface and examine and collect lunar rocks and soil

  • Soil return spacecraft, which would land on the moon, receive the samples collected by the rovers, and return them to earth.

Ouyang said a piloted mission to the moon was not a goal for China within the next decade. This authoritatively refuted several leaks in January/February 2003 of plans for a near-term manned circumlunar flight. The orbiter was within the capability of existing Chinese boosters. The rover and lander would have to await availability of the heavy-lift CZ-5 after 2010.


More at: Chang'e.

Subtopics

Chang'e-5 Chang'e-5 Flight Test Vehicle, also called the Reentry Return Flight Test Mission. The spacecraft was launched into a 209 km x 413,000 km lunar transfer orbit. The vehicle was a precursor to the planned Chang'e-5 mission and consisted of a satellite bus similar to the Chang'e-2 lunar orbiter, topped with a reentry vehicle, a subscale version of the Shenzhou landing module. The craft made an 8-day flight to loop around the Moon and return to Earth. It passed 11,300 km from the Moon on October 27 and returned to Earth on October 31. The descent capsule separated from the main vehicle at 21:53 GMT and landed north of Hohhot at 22:42 GMT. The service module made a burn at 21:56 GMT to avoid reentry and swung past the Earth to head out towards the Earth-Moon L2 point. Stationed at L2 Lagrangian point.

Chang'e 5 (CE 5) Lunar lander and rover satellite built by CAST, China.

Family: Lunar Orbiters, Moon. Country: China. Launch Vehicles: Chang Zheng 3A, Chang Zheng 3BE. Launch Sites: Xichang, Xichang LC1. Agency: CASC, CNSA. Bibliography: 2, 460, 6412, 12180.
Photo Gallery

Chang'e 3Chang'e 3
Credit: Manufacturer Image



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