Japan’s mission to the moon is now back on track

A conceptual diagram of the Japanese mission's moon landing / Photo courtesy of JAXA
A conceptual diagram of the Japanese mission’s moon landing / Photo courtesy of JAXA

Japan’s first mission to the moon has been charismatically ‘lived’ again.

According to the statement issued by the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA), the lander of the Smart Lander for Investigating Moon (SLAM) mission has started working again.

It should be noted that the lander had landed head-on on the moon after which the solar panels failed to generate electricity, due to which communication with the lander was lost.

The Japanese mission made a pinpoint landing on the moon on January 20.

The primary objective of this mission was to demonstrate the capability of pinpoint landing within 100 meters of the selected landing site.

But in the final phase of landing, one of the lander’s 2 engines stopped working, causing it to land upside down.

On January 25, the Japanese space agency said that although the mission was successful, its solar panels failed to generate electricity.

The Japanese space agency said the problem was likely caused by the landing at the wrong angle, and that changing the direction of sunlight is likely to restore the mission’s energy.

Because of this, the mission was aborted 3 hours after landing on the moon to help recover the lander.

Now, the Japanese agency said that on the night of January 28, we succeeded in re-establishing contact with the mission and immediately began scientific observation with the multi-band camera.

The Japanese agency also shared an image taken by the lander showing the surface of the moon.

Note that the Japanese mission was launched to the moon in September 2023.

After more than 4 months, the Japanese mission succeeded in pinpoint landing on the moon.

Previously, the missions of America, Russia, China and India have successfully landed on the surface of the moon and now Japan has become the 5th country in the world.

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