china-moonYou would think that because the moon is round, that it should look roughly the same all around, right? However, there is the dark side of the moon, which is basically the side that we don’t see since the moon orbits around us, which according to reports does look to be slightly different.

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It was once described by astronaut William Anders during the Apollo 8 mission in 1968 as being, “The backside looks like a sand pile my kids have played in for some time. It’s all beat up, no definition, just a lot of bumps and holes.” However it looks like we could soon be gleaning new information about it, thanks to China’s efforts.

The country’s State Administration of Science, Technology, and Industry for National Defense has recently announced plans to land a probe on the dark side of the moon in 2018. The probe is expected to gather geological data on the conditions of the dark side of the moon. Prior to this, China had another probe, the Chang’e-3 which explored the moon in 2014, but was immobilized despite its instruments remaining functional.

China is also hoping that private companies would be interested in helping with their lunar exploration efforts, in addition to using the government’s resources. We’re not sure what results it will yield, but it should be interesting.

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