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Chang'e-1 -- new mission to Moon lifts off
Date:10/24/2007

rate on the next missions in China's Change line of lunar explorers.

To perform its science mission, Change-1 carries a variety of instruments: a CCD stereo camera, a laser altimeter, an imaging interferometer, a gamma-ray/X-ray spectrometer, a microwave radiometer, a high-energy particle detector, and a solar wind particle detector.

Named after the Chinese goddess of the Moon, Change-1 represents the first phase in the Chinese Lunar Exploration Programme (CLEP). This programme is expected to last until around 2020 and the next phase will include a lander and associated rover. Looking farther into the future, plans are being drawn up for a sample return mission to bring lunar rocks to Earth for analysis.

"ESA's expertise in tracking Chang'e-1 sets the stage for future cooperation with China. The Agency's tracking station network, ESTRACK, is a resource that benefits not only the Agency but also all space science through such international cooperation," said Erik Soerensen, Head of the System Requirements and Validation Section at ESA's European Space Operations Centre.


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Contact: Detlef Koschny
Detlef.Koschny@esa.int
31-715-654-828
European Space Agency
Source:Eurekalert

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