The new colonial movement: According to a statement by one Chinese official on April 24th, China now plans to launch a constellation of communications/GPS-type satellites that will orbit the Moon and provide support for its unmanned and manned missions to the surface.
China will take the lead in demonstrating a small, lunar relay communication and navigation system, Wu Yanhua, deputy director of the China National Space Administration (CNSA), told Chinese media on April 24. The first launch for the small constellation could take place in 2023 or 2024, according to Wu, who added that countries around the world are welcome to jointly build it.
That first launch will likely be a relay satellite to support the first unmanned landers/rovers targeting the lunar south pole. It will also likely be the first of several satellites designed to provide service long term for China’s planned manned lunar base, what it has dubbed the International Lunar Research Station (ILRS). Though announced as a project partnered with Russia, expect a large bulk of the work to be done by China.
On Christmas Eve 1968 three Americans became the first humans to visit another world. What they did to celebrate was unexpected and profound, and will be remembered throughout all human history. Genesis: the Story of Apollo 8, Robert Zimmerman's classic history of humanity's first journey to another world, tells that story, and it is now available as both an ebook and an audiobook, both with a foreword by Valerie Anders and a new introduction by Robert Zimmerman.
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"Not simply about one mission, [Genesis] is also the history of America's quest for the moon... Zimmerman has done a masterful job of tying disparate events together into a solid account of one of America's greatest human triumphs."--San Antonio Express-News