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China Launches Moon Rover Mission


The Long March-3B rocket carrying the Chang'e-3 lunar probe blasts off from the launch pad at Xichang Satellite Launch Center, Sichuan province, in the early morning hours, Dec. 2, 2013.
China has launched its first robotic expedition to the Moon's surface, the latest step in an ambitious space program seen to reflect the country's rising global stature.

The Chang'e-3 lunar probe, which includes the "Jade Rabbit" rover buggy, blasted off early Monday morning (1730 GMT Sunday) on board an enhanced carrier rocket from the Xichang Satellite Launch Center in China's southwestern Sichuan province.

Chinese state television showed a live broadcast of the rocket lifting off.

The probe is due to land on the Moon in mid-December to explore its surface and look for natural resources. It is the world's third lunar rover mission following ones from the United States and former Soviet Union decades earlier.

"Hard" crash landings are easier, and China crashed a craft into the Moon in 2009. The last soft landing on the Moon by any country was by the Soviet Union in 1976.

In 2007, China launched its first Moon orbiter, the Chang'e-1 - named after a lunar goddess - which took images of the surface and analyzed the distribution of elements.

The lunar buggy was named the Jade Rabbit, or "Yutu," in a public vote, a folkloric reference to the goddess's pet.

President Xi Jinping has said he wants China to establish itself as a space superpower, and the mission has inspired widespread pride in China's growing technological prowess.

Online reactions to the launch from the Chinese public were mixed, ranging from expressions of pride of country to criticism that the accomplishment was done without the consent of the people and did nothing to help clothe and feed the population.

Beijing aims to establish a permanent space station by 2020 and eventually send someone to the Moon.

Reaction from Weibo microblog site

曾大头猫:Salute to Chang'e. Salute to "Jade Rabbit". Salute to Chinese space engineers. Salute to China Dream.
#嫦娥三号登月# “足迹已至星旗影,碧海仍是夜夜心。长征淬火送玉兔,银河不落追辰星!”向我最爱的偶像李商隐致敬,向伟大的中国航天人致敬,向每一位抱着“大国梦”说过“我们的征途是星辰大海”的爱国者致敬!!!

竹之风01:It is an exciting news that China successfully launched Chang'e 3. I still remember the launch of China's first satellite Dongfanghong. It has been fifty years and China has been greatly transformed. I am proud of my country.
今天嫦娥三号发射成功了,令人高兴令人骄傲,回想1970年第一颗东方红卫星发射升空的时候,举国上下人们欢呼奔走相告的情景还历历在目,如今在五十年不到的时间里祖国又发生了翻天覆地的变化,哪能不让人激动,自豪并为此骄傲呢?我期待玉兔发回动人的消息。

NEUTRAL
haiou1957:The U.S. has sent two men to the moon in 1969. We have a long way to go.
美国69年,已经载人登月了,我们落后了很多。 【"玉兔"月球车将永留月球】 http://t.cn/8kG1bbp

CRITICAL

章奇-2012The Jade Rabbit was launched into space and China's deep-sea submersible, the Jiaolong has plumbed the depths of the sea. China has donated billions in aid to Africa, North Korea, Vietnam and Brunei. But did you do any of this with the consent of the people? What does the launch of a moon rover or deep-sea submersible accomplish? Does it make China a more responsible country? Does it help to cloth and feed its people or make its citizens more healthy?.....

玉兔再上天,蛟龙又下水,援助非洲捐赠5000亿美金、援助朝鲜3670亿美金?援助越南130亿美金、文莱40亿美金,请问,这些你经过你的国民同意了吗?还有脸自己“负责任大国”玉龙上天能怎样?国民能丰衣足食?蛟龙下海又如何?百姓能身体健康?国内局势依旧如此;人民公仆就是人民公敌……

夫以琳:China's successful launch of Chang'e and "Jade Rabbit" makes me confident that China is capable of making best-quality milk powder and safest food.
嫦娥携玉兔奔月,感受到的喜悦竞是:中国高科技制造赶超世界先进水平中。那么我们一定能造出世界一流的奶粉,食品安全有高科技后盾也一定有保证。转基因作物安全否也一定能解答。

c川小川c:I don't care about Chang'e 3, 2 or 1. What I care about is whether I can afford to go to doctor when I am sick.
我不关心什么嫦娥几号的、我关心的是我有病了能不能看起病、我以后会不会住拐棍去上班、 (60分钟前)
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