China confirms intention to land people on the Moon

In the coming years, China plans to launch a number of robotic missions to the Moon. They will lay the groundwork for the construction of an International Scientific Lunar Station. This was stated at a seminar held in Haikou on the partnership between the UN and China.

China’s Upcoming Lunar Plans

In the coming years, China plans to send three new missions to the Moon — Chang’e-6, Chang’e-7 and Chang’e-8. The first one will try to deliver to Earth a soil sample from the territory of the southern polar region of the Moon. Chang’e-7 will study lunar topography and search for water ice deposits that can be used by manned missions. Chang’e-8 is testing 3D printing technology on the Moon using local resources.

“Chang’e-5” (concept). Source: CNSA

In addition to these missions, China will also launch a new relay satellite. It will allow to provide more reliable communication with missions at the south pole of the Moon. 

Chinese Moon Expedition and Permanent base

Before the end of this decade, China plans to send a manned expedition to the Moon. Within its framework, two people will land on the Moon, spend six hours on its surface, and then return to Earth. Chinese engineers are already building the spacecraft and lander that will be required for this expedition. To launch them, the Long March 9 superheavy rocket will be used, the design of which has recently undergone a number of iterations. It was recently announced that it would become reusable.

International Scientific Lunar Station (concept). Source: CNSA

But still, the main bet will be made on the project of the International Lunar Scientific Station. In the early 2030s, China will carry out five launches, during which all the necessary equipment and supplies will be delivered to the Moon, which will ensure a long-term stay of people. It is planned that the station will become habitable after 2035.

Back in 2021, China called Russia its main partner in this project. However, during the September presentation at the International Astronautics Congress, Russia was not mentioned at all. Since China is trying to actively involve other countries (especially Europe) in the lunar base project, it seems that the participation of the aggressor country has become too toxic even for China.

China’s plans for deep space exploration

China has also confirmed ambitious plans to explore the Solar System. They include missions to explore asteroids, Jupiter and Uranus, a test of the planetary defense system, the delivery of samples of Martian soil and much more. China is also actively working on the creation of a nuclear reactor that will be used to supply energy to the lunar base. In the longer term, China plans to engage in a manned expedition to Mars.

According to

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