Author Topic: LIVE: Chang'e-3 lunar probe and rover, CZ-3B - Xichang - December 1, 2013  (Read 178262 times)

Offline Phillip Clark

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Re: Chang'e-3, 2013
« Reply #20 on: 03/24/2012 03:35 PM »
I have just been reviewing all of the animations of the Chang'e 3 mssion which I can find online - mainly at YouTube - and all of these depict a direct return from the lunar surface, like the Luna sample-return missions.

So, was the Chinese article wrong in what it said about a rendezvous in selenocentric orbit or have the Chinese decided the re-design and complicate the mission profile in the last three years or so?

Offline HappyMartian

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Re: Chang'e-3, 2013
« Reply #21 on: 03/28/2012 02:00 PM »
I have just been reviewing all of the animations of the Chang'e 3 mssion which I can find online - mainly at YouTube - and all of these depict a direct return from the lunar surface, like the Luna sample-return missions.

So, was the Chinese article wrong in what it said about a rendezvous in selenocentric orbit or have the Chinese decided the re-design and complicate the mission profile in the last three years or so?


"After Chang’e-3, Chang’e-4 will be launched. Together, they will complete the task of landing on the moon in the second phase of China’s lunar exploration program. According to Xinhua News, Chang’e-5 will be launched in 2017 and will send back samples of moon rock to earth for analysis from a depth of two meters."

From: Chang’e-3: China To Launch First Moon Rover In 2013  By By Srinivas Laxman   March 7, 2012   At: http://www.asianscientist.com/


"The provisional mission sequence stipulates that after launch, a four-module spacecraft will enter the lunar orbit. Thereafter, two modules will touch down on the moon’s surface. One of the modules will collect the soil samples and transfer them to the ascending module which will lift off from the lunar surface."

And, "After taking off from the moon, it will dock with the orbiting module. Once this process is completed, the lunar samples will be transferred to another module which will bring it back to earth."

From: China’s Unmanned Moon Mission To Bring Back Lunar Soil To Earth By Srinivas Laxman   March 21, 2012   At: http://www.asianscientist.com/topnews/china-unmanned-moon-mission-to-bring-back-lunar-soil-2012/


 :)
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Offline Phillip Clark

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Re: Chang'e-3, 2013
« Reply #22 on: 03/28/2012 09:09 PM »
Since the Chinese originally announced Chang'e-1, Chang'e-2 and Chang'e-3 as being the lunar orbit, lunar landing/rover and sample return missions respectively, there is plenty of room for confusion since Chang'e 3 will be the first rover mission!

Maybe we should think of the original designators as being Phase 1, Phase 2 and Phase 3 respectively, with the flown Chang'e 1 and 2 being the Phase 1 missions and Chang'e 3 (and Chang'e 4? - even Chang'e 5??) being Phase 2 missions.

Offline snowhole

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Re: Chang'e-3, 2013
« Reply #23 on: 03/29/2012 02:55 AM »
Since the Chinese originally announced Chang'e-1, Chang'e-2 and Chang'e-3 as being the lunar orbit, lunar landing/rover and sample return missions respectively, there is plenty of room for confusion since Chang'e 3 will be the first rover mission!

Maybe we should think of the original designators as being Phase 1, Phase 2 and Phase 3 respectively, with the flown Chang'e 1 and 2 being the Phase 1 missions and Chang'e 3 (and Chang'e 4? - even Chang'e 5??) being Phase 2 missions.

Well the current Chang'e 2 was originally planned as a spare for Chang'e 1. Although Chang'e 1 was successful, they went ahead and let the spare fly as well and she became Chang'e 2 (taking the name originally designated for the rover). Maybe that's the logic behind the confusion.
« Last Edit: 03/29/2012 02:55 AM by snowhole »

Offline BUAA

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Re: Chang'e-3, 2013
« Reply #24 on: 04/16/2012 07:17 PM »
Since the Chinese originally announced Chang'e-1, Chang'e-2 and Chang'e-3 as being the lunar orbit, lunar landing/rover and sample return missions respectively, there is plenty of room for confusion since Chang'e 3 will be the first rover mission!

Maybe we should think of the original designators as being Phase 1, Phase 2 and Phase 3 respectively, with the flown Chang'e 1 and 2 being the Phase 1 missions and Chang'e 3 (and Chang'e 4? - even Chang'e 5??) being Phase 2 missions.
You're right that it is phase-1, 2 and 3 being orbiting, landing, and sampling returning respectively.

Each phase has two identical spacecraft built, one being the flying example and the other backup.

With Chang'e 1 successfully orbiting the Moon, there was actually no need to launch Chang'e 2. However, the programme decided to launch it nevertheless, and called it a "Phase-II" mission, a pathfinder for the subsequent Chang'e 3 lunar landing mission.

There was also media report about the first mission in the third-phase being Chang'e 5. So again Chang'e 4 is a back-up spacecraft. I would't be surprised if the mission also goes ahead.

Offline plutogno

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Re: Chang'e-3, 2013
« Reply #25 on: 04/17/2012 05:33 AM »
I think you are confusing phases of the program with missions. Phase 1 was the orbiter, phase 2 the lander and phase 3 the sample return, but the Chinese never stated that there would be a single mission for each phase. In fact, I remember a paper published even before Chang'e 1 was launched where they discussed flying TWO orbiters... now if I could remember where I saw that...
I'm one of the most durable and fervent advocates of space exploration, but my take is that we could do it robotically at far less cost and far greater quantity and quality of results.
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Offline plutogno

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Re: Chang'e-3, 2013
« Reply #26 on: 04/17/2012 07:23 AM »
the flight of 1 or 2 orbiters as the first phase of the Chang'e project was mentioned as early as 2004 in this abstract of a presentation to that year's ILEWG meeting
http://www.spaceagepub.com/pdfs/Ouyang.pdf
I'm one of the most durable and fervent advocates of space exploration, but my take is that we could do it robotically at far less cost and far greater quantity and quality of results.
James Van Allen

Online Galactic Penguin SST

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Re: Chang'e-3, 2013
« Reply #27 on: 07/11/2012 03:20 PM »
Well I've reviewed the presentation by Ouyang Ziyuan at the China Academy of Science in June, and it has a list of instruments to be carried on board the lander and the rover. Three of the instruments are definitely worth mentioning:

1. The lander will carry an optical telescope (probably not that big, around a dozen cm in diameter) that would conduct the first ever astronomical observation from the lunar surface (well, the later Apollo J-class CSM came rather close....). This telescope will operate in the near UV region, and will target close binary stars, active galactic nuclei, short-period variable stars etc.

2. Also on the lander is a far UV region camera that will observe the 30.4 nanometer band radiation from the Earth's ionosphere, another first in lunar exploration. This will monitor the effect of space weather, solar activity, Earth's geomagnetic field and particle streams on the Earth's ionosphere.

3. The rover will carry a radar on it's bottom side, allowing for the first direct observation of the structure and depth of lunar soil down to 30 meters deep and the lunar crust structure down to a depth several hundred meters.

Other instruments include:

Lander: 3 x panoramic cameras, 1 x descent camera, 1 x extensible lunar soil probe, 1 x lander engineering package, 1 x lander data controller

Rover: 2 x panoramic cameras, 2 x navigation and engineering camera sets, 1 x alpha particle X-ray spectrometer, 1 x infrared spectrometer, 1 x lander engineering package, 1 x lander data controller.

The lander phase is rather conventional, but it includes a 100 second hovering phase for the lander to take photos of the landing area and find a flat spot for landing.

Sources:

Video of the presentation: http://www.cas.cn/zt/hyzt/16thysdh/zb/ (CE-3 part starts at 208 minutes)

http://www.9ifly.cn/forum.php?mod=redirect&goto=findpost&ptid=451&pid=166465

Meanwhile, the engineering model of CE-3 was transported to XSLC in June for practices of the launch campaign, still on target for launch next year. This is one of the reasons why no launches were scheduled from Xichang last month.

(source: http://www.9ifly.cn/forum.php?mod=redirect&goto=findpost&pid=210070&ptid=451)
Hmm....where can I apply for the job of United Launch Alliance internet cheerleader?

Offline Phillip Clark

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Re: Chang'e-3, 2013
« Reply #28 on: 07/11/2012 06:54 PM »
On Apollo 16 an U-V telescope was set up on the lunar surface. to do a survery while the crew were wandering around.

Offline Dalhousie

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Re: Chang'e-3, 2013
« Reply #29 on: 07/11/2012 10:35 PM »
One of the Lunokhods carried a french telescope as well. 

The Lunokhods also reported quite bright skies, suggesting suspended dust, it is important for missions like Chang'e 3 to determine how good the lunar surface is for telescopic observations.

The geological backage sounds great - GPR, XRS, penetrometer.  I am really looking forward to these.
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Offline plutogno

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Re: Chang'e-3, 2013
« Reply #30 on: 07/23/2012 05:29 AM »
I noticed the working of the "rover lift" at 0.37 in this video
I was wondering: what happens if there is an obstacle and the way out the lift is not clear? the lift may not even be able to touch the ground if there is some strategically-placed rock in its deployment area...
I'm one of the most durable and fervent advocates of space exploration, but my take is that we could do it robotically at far less cost and far greater quantity and quality of results.
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Offline savuporo

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Re: Chang'e-3, 2013
« Reply #31 on: 07/23/2012 03:33 PM »
I bet they have some sort of landing hazard avoidance system, plus they will have picked a relatively flat and obstacle free landing area in the first place. And then, i dont think Lunokhods had anything like that, both did fine. Worst case, they'll make tweaks and try again.
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Offline plutogno

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Re: Chang'e-3, 2013
« Reply #32 on: 07/23/2012 03:40 PM »
the Lunokhods had two slides, one in front of the lander, the other at the rear, just for this reason. the same for Mars Pathfinder
« Last Edit: 07/23/2012 08:35 PM by plutogno »
I'm one of the most durable and fervent advocates of space exploration, but my take is that we could do it robotically at far less cost and far greater quantity and quality of results.
James Van Allen

Offline savuporo

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Re: Chang'e-3, 2013
« Reply #33 on: 07/23/2012 09:20 PM »
Yep, but statistically, that gives you only 2x better odds than 1 side ramp ( or unloader in this case ) with no guidance.
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Offline Dalhousie

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Re: Chang'e-3, 2013
« Reply #34 on: 07/23/2012 10:09 PM »
There are not many large rocks on the lunar surface, so the odds are low, maybe it's a risk they are prepared to take.
On the other hand, maybe they have an obstacle avoidance system for landing.
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Offline savuporo

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Re: Chang'e-3, 2013
« Reply #35 on: 07/26/2012 07:34 PM »
(facepalm) what a dumb headline .. China to Launch Nuclear Moon Rover in 2013

I guess RHUs make rovers "nucular" now.
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Offline plutogno

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Re: Chang'e-3, 2013
« Reply #36 on: 07/26/2012 07:53 PM »
I have seen it reported as an RTG, not as RHUs
see for ex http://www.dragoninspace.com/lunar-exploration/change3.aspx
I'm one of the most durable and fervent advocates of space exploration, but my take is that we could do it robotically at far less cost and far greater quantity and quality of results.
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Offline Ben the Space Brit

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Re: Chang'e-3, 2013
« Reply #37 on: 07/27/2012 12:28 PM »
Do we have a landing target confirmed yet? A nuke would suggest that they're aiming for one of the shadowed craters at the poles where solar couldn't be guaranteed.

Yes, that means that Chang'e-3 might be a water-hunter.
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Offline plutogno

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Re: Chang'e-3, 2013
« Reply #38 on: 07/27/2012 12:32 PM »
it's long being known that the landing site will be in Sinus Iridum, near the Lunokhod 1 landing site. see for ex: http://meetingorganizer.copernicus.org/EPSC2012/EPSC2012-151-1.pdf
the use of an RTG is dictated by the need to survive the lunar night (and probably make some observations during it)
I'm one of the most durable and fervent advocates of space exploration, but my take is that we could do it robotically at far less cost and far greater quantity and quality of results.
James Van Allen

Offline Star One

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Re: Chang'e-3, 2013
« Reply #39 on: 07/27/2012 03:28 PM »
I have seen it reported as an RTG, not as RHUs
see for ex http://www.dragoninspace.com/lunar-exploration/change3.aspx

Will this be China's first nuclear powered space probe?

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