China's Yutu moon rover, stopped in its tracks due to glitch.  Credit: Chinese Academy of Sciences

China’s Yutu moon rover, stopped in its tracks due to glitch.
Credit: Chinese Academy of Sciences

China’s “Yutu” moon rover remains in critical condition, according to a recent report in South China Morning Post.

According to the news outlet, there are “last-ditch efforts” to rescue the ailing lunar rover.

Chinese engineers now say a blockage in the rover’s power circuitry is at fault for issues encountered and specialists are looking to bypass the problem. The trouble has meant that the rover’s main driving mechanism cannot be powered up. Yutu – or “Jade Rabbit” — is currently incapable of activating its wheels or solar panels.

Jade Rabbit has been parked on the moon’s surface for more than two months after wheeling across the lunar surface.

The lunar rover’s power supply system was designed and built by the Shanghai Institute of Space Power Sources under the Shanghai Academy of Spaceflight Technology.

Despite the robot’s inability to move, scientific gear on the rover, such as cameras, and a ground-penetrating radar are apparently still working, reportedly relaying data back to Earth control.

China’s Chang’e 3 robotic moon lander touched down on December 14, 2013. The one-ton lander later let loose Jade Rabbit that successfully traversed the site, but broke down on January 25.

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