China likely to launch second lunar probe on Friday

September 30th, 2010 - 5:30 pm ICT by ANI  

New Delhi, Sep 30 (ANI): The Chinese space authority has said that it will launch its second lunar probe, Chang’e-2, between Friday and Sunday, with former being the first choice.

Fuel loading was scheduled to begin on Thursday to inject propellants into the carrier rocket, a Long March 3-C.

The fuel loading will be under way until the last three minutes before the launch, said a spokesman for the Xichang Satellite Launch Center in southwestern China’s Sichuan province.

The Chang’e-2 probe, named for the character in the legend of a Chinese fairy who flew to the moon, is expected to test parts of key technologies for Chang’e-3, which is expected to land on the moon in about 2013, the China Daily reports.

It will also refine scientific research findings conducted by Chang’e-1, the spokesman said.

China’s lunar exploration program, which has been designed to eventually land a Chinese craft on the moon, calls for the launch of three satellites at the second stage: Chang’e-2, Chang’e-3 and Chang’e-4. (ANI)

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