China’s Jade Rabbit Returns From the Dead?
2014 02 13

By Jacob Aron and Lisa Grossman | New Scientist

China’s Jade Rabbit moon rover showing signs of life

Reports of the moon bunny’s death may be somewhat exaggerated. Despite earlier suggestions that China’s lunar rover, Yutu – or Jade Rabbit – had been officially declared dead, Chinese state media now say that the rabbit has phoned home. It remains unclear, though, whether the rover is healthy enough to continue its mission.

A news statement from state media agency Xinhua reports that the Chinese space agency is seeing signs of life from Yutu. And a website that records amateur monitoring of radio signals from space has received a downlink signal from Yutu, according to the Planetary Society.

Getting a signal from the rover raises hopes that all is not lost. According to Xinhua, a mission member has said: "The situation of the little rabbit is improving, with a little indication of awakening. Wait a while more."

Early mourning

Yutu’s troubles began last month, just six weeks into its three-month mission. China’s Chang’e-3 lander touched down on the moon on 14 December and released the Yutu rover about 7 hours later. Both machines successfully entered hibernation mode during their first lunar night. On the moon, night lasts for half of each Earthly month and plunges surface temperatures from daytime highs of about 90 °C to below -180 °C.

When the second lunar night rolled around on 25 January the lander went in to hibernation but Yutu appeared to have failed. It is impossible to communicate with the vehicles during lunar night, so mission operators had to wait until the new lunar day on Monday this week to confirm whether Yutu would respond.

[...]

Read the full article at: newscientist.com




Related Articles
China’s Moon Rover, Jade Rabbit, Has Broken Down
US and China May Cooperate in Space Exploration
China’s moon rover lands, leaves traces on lunar soil


Latest News from our Front Page

A Look at Theories About Elongated Skulls in Ancient Peru, Europe, Egypt
2014 07 31
Elongated skulls have been found in ancient burial grounds around the world. Many are the result of a practice of intentionally deforming the skull with binding applied during the early years of a child’s life. Some may be explained by natural deformity. Yet enough mystery is left in relation to some of the skulls for various theories to arise. Could the ...
EU on high alert as Germany accepts Ebola patients
2014 07 30
A German hospital has agreed to treat Ebola patients amid widespread fears of a possible outbreak of the deadly disease in Europe. Over 670 people have already been killed by the disease in West Africa with doctors struggling to control the epidemic. A German hospital in Hamburg agreed to accept patients following a request from the World Health Organization (WHO), Deutsche ...
Bolivia declares Israel terrorist regime
2014 07 30
Bolivia has declared Israel a “terrorist state” and revoked a visa exemption agreement with Tel Aviv in protest at the ongoing Israeli attacks on the besieged Gaza Strip. The move "means, in other words, we are declaring (Israel) a terrorist state," President Evo Morales said during talks with a group of educators in the city of Cochabamba ...
Pagan Traditions: Mysteries of medieval graffiti in England’s churches
2014 07 30
Medieval graffiti of straw kings, pentagrams, crosses, ships and "demon traps" have been offering a tantalising glimpse into England’s past. What do the pictures reveal about life in the Middle Ages? A project to record the graffiti, which began in Norfolk, has now been rolled out to other areas and is gradually spreading across England. Armed with just a torch and a ...
More Gigantic Holes Appear in Siberia’s ’End of the World’
2014 07 30
Is it the end of the world in Siberia’s ’End of the World’? Scientists suspect not, but they’re still investigating the strange and alarming holes that are swallowing up the Siberian north. This week two new holes have been discovered, and with similar characteristics as the first reported hole: a very deep shaft with smooth sides, debris surrounding the rim, and water ...
More News »