History-Making Chinese Spacecraft Spotted by NASA's Moon Orbiter

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Longjiang-2 beams photos of the moon back to Earth via the Dwingeloo Radio Observatory in the Netherlands, where astronomers have volunteered to help China's space agency receive the images using the observatory's super-sensitive radio antenna.

The image was snapped by a camera aboard the Chinese DSLWP-B/Longjiang-2 satellite.

NASA's Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter (LRO) recently caught a view of China National Space Administration's Chang'e-4 lander on the lunar surface. But as the image shows, the moon's far side is often illuminated by the sun, exposing the impact-blasted, grey lunar desert. Queqiiao satellite played a significant role in the entire landing mission.

This photo of Earth and the Lunar farside, maybe our best ever, was taken yesterday by the Chinese Lunar satellite DSLWP-B (Longjiang-2). Longjiang-2 has been a success, although during the Chang'e-4 landing the satellite was silent in order to not interfere with communications between the Earth and the lander. However, the tiny satellite became active again on 13th January 2019.

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A new photo captured by Longjiang-2 on Monday (Feb. 4) reveals the so-called "dark side of the moon" basking in sunlight as Earth photobombs the moon in the background.

On 3rd February, a command was sent to the camera to capture a time-lapse of the Earth-Moon system, which was successfully accomplished. The Dwingeloo telescope downloaded the photo from the satellite this morning.

Full colour adjusted images captured throughout the process are available on Cess Bassa's blog post.

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