Astronomers resolve mystery of 'cube' spotted on Moon's dark side

WION Web Team
Beijing, China Published: Jan 08, 2022, 08:38 PM(IST)

Yutu-2 is currently operational as the first lunar rover on the far side. Photograph:( Twitter )

Story highlights

The object, that had been dubbed as 'mystery hut' online, was called 'Moon palace’ or an alien base by several social media users

Astronomers have finally resolved the mystery of the ''cube'' spotted on the Moon's dark side.

Our Space, a science website affiliated with China National Space Administration (CNSA) has released a close-up of the oddly shaped object that was spotted on the Moon's surface.

The object, that had been dubbed as 'mystery hut' online, was called 'Moon palace’ or an alien base by several social media users.

It had been captured by Chinese lunar rover Yutu-2 on the horizon about 80 metres (87 yards) from its location.

Also read | 'Mysterious' object spotted by Chinese Yutu 2 rover on far side of the Moon

Under the hashtag "Yutu's latest discovery", a series of internet memes showed the rover rolling over the lunar plain towards a pair of obelisks, a tall monolith, and even a giant hammer and sickle, the symbol of the Communist Party.

However, it has turned out to be a simple rock lying on the rim of a crate. 

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The solar-powered Yutu, or "Jade Rabbit" in Chinese, will cover the distance of 80 metres in two to three lunar days, according to Our Space, or two to three Earth months.

The robotic rover has been operating in the Von Karman Crater in the South Pole-Aitken Basin since its deployment in January 2019.

The mission was a historic first, with no other nation having landed on the far side of the moon until then.

With the moon tidally locked to Earth - rotating at the same speed as it orbits our planet - most of its "dark side" is never visible to those on Earth.

Under President Xi Jinping, plans for China's "space dream" have been put into overdrive.

China is looking to finally catch up with the United States and Russia after years of belatedly matching their milestones.

Besides a space station, China is also planning to build a base on the Moon, and the country's National Space Administration said it aims to launch a crewed lunar mission by 2029.

(With inputs from agencies)

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