Headline News


China´s lunar milestone celebrated


Source: | 11-27-2007 09:01

Special Report:   Chang'e I -Journey to the Moon

Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao (R) unveils the moon image captured by China's lunar orbiter Chang'e-1 during an unveiling ceremony at the Beijing Aerospace Control Center in Beijing, capital of China, Nov. 26, 2007. China published the first picture of the moon captured by Chang'e-1 on Monday morning, marking the success of the country's first lunar probe project. (Xinhua Photo)

China's space agency is celebrating a major milestone in the mission of the country's first lunar orbiter, the Chang'e-One. Early on Monday, Premier Wen Jiabao unveiled the first image sent back by the probe.

Surrounded by applause at the Beijing Aerospace Control Center Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao unveiled the first lunar picture captured by the CCD stereo camera on Chang'e-One.

And then Premier Wen hailed China's space achievement.

Wen said, "Chang'e-One sent the clearly visible light picture from the circum-moon orbit 380,000 kilometers away from the Earth. It marks a great success of our nation's first Lunar Project."

"The lunar probe is the third landmark, following the earth satellites and manned spacecraft. The complete success of our first lunar project brings our nation into the ranks of a few countries that have deep space exploration ability. This demonstrates the obvious reinforcement of our national strength and the advancement of our innovation and technology. The success bears great realistic and historic significance in elevating our international status... and rallying our national spirit."

Premier Wen Jiabao commended the control center staff for their hard work and achievements.

The first lunar picture was mapped out after scientists processed a large amount of data Chang'e-One captured on November 20th and 21st.

During the afternoon's briefing by the Information Office of the State Council, the director of the Control Center, Zhu Mincai, named the three factors that will keep the mission on target in the coming year.

Zhu Mincai, director of Beijing Aerospace Control Center,said, "First, we've organized a team of efficient staff. Second, we've devised a whole set of strict, scientific operational guidelines. Third, we've prepared contingency plans for likely events of failure."

The lunar probe is designed to stay in its working orbit for one year. Scientists say its smooth operations and precise maneuvers over the past month have likely saved a considerable amount of fuel. And that will help prolong the probe's life span. And that's good news, because much more is still expected from the probe in the year ahead."


Editor:Zhang Ning