China to launch 3 'artificial moons', will replace streetlights of city

WION Web Team New Delhi, Delhi, India Oct 18, 2018, 03.48 PM(IST)

File photo. Photograph:( Reuters )

China is reportedly in the process of launching "artificials moon" into orbit which will be bright enough to illuminate Chengdu, the southwestern province of Sichuan in China.

According to reports, Chinese scientists are planning to launch three satellites into orbit by 2020 with claims that the light the "moons" give off will be enough to replace the streetlights of Chengdu city.

These manmade moons will reportedly be eight times brighter than the real moon and will be made from a reflective material like glass with solar panel-like wings to reflect light from the sun.

According to reports, the angles of these wings can also be adjusted to focus light on a particular location.

The testing of these devices reportedly started years ago and now they are ready to send into space.

According to local media reports, these artificial moons will save hundreds of millions of dollars a year in electricity costs.

China's local media agency, Xinhua has reported that the idea for the man-made moon originated from a French artist who imagined hanging a necklace made of mirrors in the sky to light up the streets of Paris at night.

Russia in 1999 had also attempted a similar project in which it was planning to launch a 25-metre "space mirror" to light up cities in Siberia. However, later the project was cancelled.

Meanwhile, scientists have shown concern that it could disturb wildlife and disrupt systems that observe the earth's atmosphere.

Details related to the project's cost, maintenance and the launch date is not revealed yet.