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Tech & ScienceChina's lunar rover discovers strange substance on far side of the moon

12:35  01 september  2019
12:35  01 september  2019 Source:   cnet.com

China's lunar rover delivers bewitching new views of the far side of the moon

China's lunar rover delivers bewitching new views of the far side of the moon The Chang'e 4 moon lander and its bunny rover buddy are still gazing across the desolate, magnificent lunar surface.

China ' s Chang'e-4 lunar rover , Yutu-2, has discovered an unusually colored 'gel-like' substance during its exploration activities on the Related: Chang'e 4 in Pictures: China ' s Mission to the Moon 's Far Side . Strange orange soil was discovered on the moon by the Apollo 17 mission in 1972.

As the first mission to successfully land on the far side of the moon , it was almost expected China ' s Chang'e 4 would make some enchanting discoveries .

China's lunar rover discovers strange substance on far side of the moon © CNET

Inside this crater, Yutu-2 detected something pretty darn weird.

China's Yutu-2 rover, launched as part of the Chang'e 4 mission, is the first ever robot to explore the far side of the moon. Since landing in January, it's snapped gorgeous views of the lunar surface and made one unexpected discovery. Now, its made another surprising find: hidden in a crater, Yutu-2 has discovered an unusual substance with a "gel-like" appearance.

According to a report by Space.com, the rover's surprise discovery was made during exploration activities on lunar day 8, which began on July 25. Each lunar day lasts for two Earth weeks and during this time the solar-powered rover carries out scientific observations, measuring radiation and surveying its surrounds.

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The Chang'e 4 lunar lander sits pretty on the moon 's far side in this image taken by the Jade Rabbit 2 rover . That makes China ' s mission particularly important, but because of the complexities of studying moon minerals on a planetary body hundreds of thousands of miles away, further work will

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Three days into day 8, a member of the Chang'e 4 team was reviewing images taken during by the rover and noticed a strangely colored material, distinct from the gray soil around it. Yutu-2 was scheduled to move on, but the team instead turned their attention toward the substance and sent the rover to the crater for a better look. The Yutu-2 "drive diary" says the team commanded the rover to point its spectrometer, a device which can evaluate the composition of materials, at the unusual substance.

China's lunar rover discovers strange substance on far side of the moon © Provided by CBS Interactive Inc. Yutu-2 thinking "I hope there aren't aliens in that crater" China National Space Administration

The team didn't indicate what the substance might be and sadly, haven't shared an image of the weird material. The team did, however, share an image of the rover heading for the crater to have a gander at what's inside.

I know you're thinking aliens but Andrew Jones, a journalist reporting on the Chinese space program, wrote one possible explanation thrown up by other researchers is that the gel-like substance is melt glass, created after a meteor strike.

China's Chang'e 4 spacecraft landed on the moon on Jan. 3. Shortly after it sent back the very first photos of moon's far side. The Yutu-2 rover is now in it's ninth lunar day, which began on Aug. 25.

China releases new images of a bizarre substance found in a Moon crater .
Earlier this month, the Chinese space agency revealed that the Yutu-2 rover it sent to the far side of the Moon months back found something it didn't expect.It was a strange, glossy substance that Chinese researchers said had a “gel-like” appearance. Nobody can say for certain what it is, but early theories suggested it may be lunar glass created by whatever impact created the crater itself. Now, China has released some additional images of the crater and the material inside, but the mystery is no closer to being solved.

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