This video shows actual footage of the Chang’e 3 lander and Yutu rover descending to the lunar surface.

China’s first moon rover and lander have entered a third period of “Selene slumber,” a shutdown of operations given two weeks of temperature-dropping lunar night.

The Yutu moon rover went into programmed sleep mode on Feb. 22. The large lunar lander slipped into its latest hibernation period the next day.

Due to exceedingly low temperatures of the lunar night that drop to minus 292 degrees Fahrenheit (minus 180 degrees Celsius), the rover’s electronics and mechanical systems are strained to withstand the thermal plunge.

The Chang’e 3 lander entered its third chilly period of extended night after carrying out observations of celestial bodies and the Earth’s plasmasphere using its optical telescope and extreme ultraviolet camera.

The overall condition of the now moon-mum Chang’e 3 mission is vague at best. Chinese space officials release little information on the status of the moon mission, which can then be broadcast by state-run media networks. For more information visit Space.com

Posted by: Soderman/SSERVI Staff
Source: Leonard David/Space.com

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