Photo by Ars Electronica on Flickr.com
China plans to complete the construction of a nuclear-powered base by 2028 before launching manned missions to the Moon.
New statements came from China regarding the steps taken to establish a base on the moon.
The chief designer of the lunar exploration program, Wu Weiren, gave information about the country’s plans for exploration activities on the Moon and deep space in an interview with state television CCTV.
A manned expedition to the Moon in 10 years
Stating that they are planning to organize manned expeditions to the Moon within ten years, Wu stated that they aim to establish a base that will work with nuclear energy until 2028.
China became the first country to achieve this by landing its Chang’e 4 robotic vehicle on the dark side of the moon in 2019. Then, the “
Chang’e 5, an exploration vehicle launched in 2021, brought rock and soil samples collected from the surface of the moon to the world.
China’s new plans for the Moon and the south pole
Wu stated that new ones will be added to the exploration missions named after the Moon goddess in Chinese mythology in the coming years, “Chang’e 6” missions to collect rock and soil samples from the dark side of the moon and “Chang’e 7” missions to explore the south pole.
Noting that they aim to establish a base that will form the basis of a scientific research station at the south pole of the moon with the “Chang’e 8” mission planned in 2028, Wu said that the base will include an orbiting satellite, a landing shuttle, a lander, a reconnaissance vehicle, a wheeled rover, and other reconnaissance vehicles. stated that it will consist of technical equipment.
“We are developing a new system”
Pointing out that they plan to run the station with nuclear energy, Wu said, “We are developing a new system to meet the long-term and high energy needs of the lunar station.” said.
Wu, a member of the Chinese Academy of Engineering, declined to give technical details about the new system. However, from previous information, it is estimated that the system will be a nuclear reactor capable of producing one megawatt of electricity.
Noting that China is still continuing its exploration activities on Mars, Wu also reported that they plan to carry out exploration activities for Jupiter, Uranus, and the Asteroid Belt and send a deep space observation satellite to the threshold of the Solar System.
Nuclear energy is expected to be preferred in the Moon project, as it provides a long-term and reliable energy source that is not dependent on environmental conditions and sunlight.