Image From the Far Side

Congratulations to China and the Chinese space program. They made history by putting the Chang’e4 lander on the surface of the Moon, on the far side – the first time in history.

The lander which includes a rover will study mineral composition and reportedly do low frequency radio-astronomy landed in Von Karman crater.

The crater you see in the image above is not Von Karman, it is a small crater within Von Karman. Von Karman is a very large crater 180 Km / 106 miles across and is located in he south-eastern quadrant on the far-side of the moon and thus never visible to us (Longitude: 176.245 east / Latitude: 44.451 south). From the photo it appears the part of the crater wall might be visible in the background.

Here is a view from the Virtual Moon Atlas. I checked and there is no information on the smaller caters within the main crater. So I was unable to figure out exactly where it is from the image.  If you don’t have the Virtual Moon Atlas you can download it here. it is free and a great program.

The upper image is from China Xinhua News and by the way, if you are wondering how they got the signal back to Earth, it was done by a relay from the Queqiao relay satellite operating in orbit around the second Lagrangian (L2) point of the earth-moon system.

The lower image as noted is from the Virtual Moon Atlas and you can (or should be able to) get larger versions by clicking the images.

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