The “dark side of the Moon” is often used as a phrase to describe the unknown, because it can’t be viewed from Earth. While modern technology has allowed us to glimpse this side of the moon, humanity has yet to land any kind of spacecraft there in order to explore, but that’s something that China wants to change. The country has announced that it plans to launch a probe to the dark side of the moon in 2018.
China is set to launch a space mission to land on the dark side of the moon in 2018. Chinese state media reported that if the mission is successful, it will be a first for humanity. The dark, or far, side of the moon is the hemisphere that is never directly visible from Earth. It has been photographed before, but has never been explored, reported AFP. China’s Chang’e-4 probe, which is named after the Chinese goddess of the moon, “will make a soft landing on the back side of the moon” and carry out patrolling surveys, according to the country’s lunar exploration chief, Liu Jizhong. In 2013, China landed a rover named Yutu on the moon. In 2014, an unmanned probe completed its first return mission. The country also has plans to set up a permanent orbiting station by 2020 and aims to eventually send a person to the moon.