Yutu-2 (horizontal arrow) was about 130 meters west of the Chang’e 4 lander (vertical arrow) on June 3, 2019.
Credit: NASA/GSFC/Arizona State University

 

NASA’s Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter (LRO) has snapped new imagery of China’s Yutu-2 rover that is still on the move!

The orbiter’s Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter Camera (LROC) shows the wheeled rover about 426 feet (130 meters) west of the Chang’e-4 lander.

Once a month, LRO passes over the Chang’e 4 landing site, allowing LROC to capture a new image. LROC has now imaged the site five times (since the landing) on January 3 and observed Yutu-2 to have traveled a total of 610 feet (186 meters) – the distance measured using the rover tracks.

Credit: CNSA/CLEP

Slower progress

“Progress over the past two months has been slower than in previous months,” reports Mark Robinson, the LROC principal investigator at Arizona State University. “Perhaps the rover has found some interesting geology and is lingering to collect a comprehensive set of measurements!”

LROC will keep imaging the site as the Sun angles and look angles vary, to better understand the reflectance of this region, Robinson said, “and to watch Yutu-2 keep on roving and exploring!”

For full details on LROC’s recent imagery of China’s lander/rover mission on the Moon’s farside, go to:

http://lroc.sese.asu.edu/posts/1109

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