Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Chinese Space Program Aspiration: Send Lander to Moon Next Year

A Chinese flag on the Moon?
The communist country tested a new rocket engine Sunday that uses liquid oxygen and kerosene, which will power future missions to the moon, according to news reports.
If successful, China’s probe would be the first craft to land on the moon as part of a mission since the Soviets managed it in the 1970s. The country also said it plans to land a man on the moon, a feat only achieved by the United States, most recently in 1972.
Neither the Russians nor the U.S. is currently capable of landing a man on the moon. Since the end of the space shuttle era, NASA’s has focused its eyes on a new spacecraft for manned exploration of space, the Orion multipurpose vehicle, which won’t be ready until 2017 at the earliest.
But China will nonetheless face stiff competition from a growing private space industry in the U.S. and elsewhere. The industry has its eyes on the moon and the cash that can be extracted from rocks and craters.
Click image for full story at Fox.com

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