China's Moon Rover "Yutu" is Dead
February 12, 2014 1:40 PM
comment(s) - last by
Extreme temperatures killed it
RIP lunar rover
, China's lunar rover Yutu -- also called Jade Rabbit -- was pronounced dead this week, ending its three-month mission to the moon earlier than expected.
The cause of death was exposure to extreme temperatures, as a malfunction prevented Yutu from protecting its sensitive systems through the moon's daytime highs and nighttime lows.
Yutu made its way to the moon
December 14, 2013 when it hitched a ride from China's Chang'e-3 lander. Yutu successfully entered hibernation mode the first lunar night, where a mast folds down and a radioactive heat source protect delicate instruments. A solar panel is also angled towards the point where the sun will rise, which keeps up Yutu's power levels.
It's important to note that a lunar night lasts for half of each Earthly month. Also, surface temperatures fluctuate from daytime highs of 90 °C to below -180 °C.
The second lunar night came January 25, and while the lander successfully went into hibernation, Yutu was unable to enter the sleep mode crucial for protecting itself from the dangerous temperatures.
Yutu [SOURCE: Universe Today]
All China could do was wait until the new lunar day, which began Monday. It's impossible to communicate with Yutu during a lunar night.
As it turns out, Yutu couldn't handle the temperature fluctuations, and was declared dead this week.
China's space agency believes lunar dust might've caused the malfunction, since the grains have sharp edges capable of interrupting Yutu's daily operations.
Back in 2011, China released a paper that described China's five-year plan, which consisted of the construction of
, space laboratories, ship freighters and a manned spaceship.
China said it planned to use probes to explore the moon's surface as well as asteroids, planets and the sun. A spacecraft will also be used to study black holes and celestial bodies close to Earth. Space debris will be studied as well in an effort to create systems that protect spacecraft from such debris.
added that China hopes to improve launch vehicles, meteorological satellites, communications and broadcasting to form a global satellite navigation system.
This article is over a month old, voting and posting comments is disabled
2/13/2014 9:26:09 AM
Economic growth won't do them much good when they are dying from poisoning their air and water. Air in Beijing is nearly unbreathable at times, forcing everyone to stay inside. Rice is full of lead and other heavy metals from spill-off from factories. The effects of this will exist long after production moves to a new cheap labour third world nation.
2/13/2014 1:44:30 PM
Beijing's air quality is 8th on the list of worst in Chinese large cities, too.
"If you look at the last five years, if you look at what major innovations have occurred in computing technology, every single one of them came from AMD. Not a single innovation came from Intel." -- AMD CEO Hector Ruiz in 2007
China's Moon Rover Lands Safe and Sound, Starts Snapping Pics
December 16, 2013, 1:22 PM
China's Lunar Rover Enters Orbit, Prepares for Historic Sat. Landing
December 13, 2013, 5:00 PM
China's Five-Year Space Plans Described in New Report
December 30, 2011, 11:40 AM
Quick Note: BMW Announces ActiveHybrid 5, Sets March '12 Launch Date
September 30, 2011, 8:45 AM
Airbus Shows Off All-Electric E-Fan 2.0 Airplane, Plans Production in 2017
July 21, 2014, 9:29 AM
Buzz Aldrin Says First Astronauts to Set Foot on Mars Should Never Return Home
July 9, 2014, 9:46 AM
Women May Soon Be Able to Control Their Fertility via Remote Control
July 7, 2014, 10:14 AM
Tiny "Bio-bots" Powered by Muscle Cells, Electrical Pulses
July 3, 2014, 7:00 PM
Boston Using Solar-Powered Benches as Phone Charging Stations
July 1, 2014, 1:09 PM
Hobby Lobby Ruling Raises Question -- Can Religious Doctors Deny Transfusions?
June 30, 2014, 7:57 PM
Most Popular Articles
Quick Note: Nokia Devices Now Receiving Windows Phone 8.1 Update
July 15, 2014, 10:42 AM
Microsoft Kills Entertainment Unit, May Shelve Flagship Lumia "McLaren"
July 18, 2014, 7:40 PM
Boeing 777 Malaysian Airlines Flight 17 Crashes in Ukraine
July 17, 2014, 1:00 PM
Tesla Confirms “Model III” EV with 200+ Mile Range, Blames Ford for Missed "SEX"
July 15, 2014, 9:12 PM
FBI Report Suggests That Self-Driving Cars Could Be Used as Rolling Bombs
July 16, 2014, 11:02 AM
Latest Blog Posts
Space Terrorism is a Looming Threat For the United States
Apr 23, 2014, 7:47 PM
Facebook Aims to Provide Internet to "Every Person in the World" with Drones, Satellites
Apr 1, 2014, 10:20 AM
Retail Mobile Sites Experience Outages in Light of Simplexity's Bankruptcy
Mar 14, 2014, 8:48 AM
Tesla vs. BMW: Who Has the Safer EV?
Feb 1, 2014, 2:56 PM
Justice Leaks Details of Next HTC One Two Flagship Phone
Dec 5, 2013, 4:04 PM
More Blog Posts
Copyright 2014 DailyTech LLC. -
Terms, Conditions & Privacy Information