China launching lunar spacecraft to test growing plants on the dark side of the Moon


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It’s not quite clear from the article why they plan on doing it on the far side. Just a test to show that their communications satellite that’s on the other side can work as a relay?


Sounds like a promotional stunt for a Pink Floyd-branded cannabis strain.



The other side of the moon alternates between being sunlit or dark just as much as the near side.

Please, please, please stop calling it the dark side of the moon. It spreads bad ignorance.


“What is this, the dark ages?”


The so-called Dark Ages alternated between being daytime or night just as much as modern times.

Please, please, please stop calling them the Dark Ages. It spreads opportunities for silly remixes of initial posts.


China launching lunar spacecraft to test growing plants on the dark side of the Moon

Has anyone told them it’s dark on that side of the moon?


Damn it! The ignorance infected @Papasan before he could read the comments! You were too late, @tuhu, too late!


Those plants should grow fine.

They’ll need helluva lot of shielding though.


Here’s what they will find…


As long as they don’t try to do any mining on the far side using nuclear bombs for excavation, we should be safe.


it had its moments, though it was pretty bad exept for the FX.

haha, nice, already found it. thanks.


Well, that’s what they SAY they’re gonna do there, but it’s the far (not dark) side of the moon, so who’ll know for sure?


I don’t see the problem. Since the far side of the moon consists of dark matter, “dark side” is just a convenient shorthand.


What for? There is already robust proof of concept for this.



The big goal seems to be Radio Astronomy, using the moon to shield the craft from Earth’s transmissions.

But most of this seems to just be proving the tech. The science is a bit of an afterthought. That’s fine though, you have to prove the tech at some point.


I think you’re right, but I didn’t see that in the article. They mentioned the Earth’s atmosphere blocking signals, but of course you don’t need to be on the far side of the moon to care about that.


Chang’e 4 is going to sample the lunar far side - the first mission to attempt to land there and tell us what it’s made of (the far side is quite different from the near side). Clearly they had some mass left over and have added a neat experiment to their next lander rather than wait any longer.


So, space potatoes?


Technically, the far side of the Moon gets MORE sunlight as the Earth is never in the way of the Sun when the far side of the Moon is facing the sun, unlike the near side.