China will launch its Queqiao-2 communications relay satellite in 2024 to support upcoming robotic landing missions at the lunar south pole and far side of the moon.
South Korea’s first robotic lunar orbiter, Danuri, entered the lunar orbit after conducting its first lunar orbit insertion maneuver Dec. 16.
South Korean President Yoon Suk-yeol said Nov. 28 that the country will land a robotic spacecraft on the moon in 2032 and on Mars in 2045.
South Korea’s robotic lunar orbiter Danuri successfully demonstrated “space internet” on its way to the moon by sending video and photo files, including a popular Korean band’s music video, at a distance of more than 1.2 million kilometers to Earth.
China is looking to build partnerships for its upcoming missions to the moon and deep ventures into the solar system, while omitting mention of main partner Russia.
Like missions in low-Earth and geostationary orbit, deep space missions will require extensive computing capability.
China and the United States have identified overlapping potential landing sites at the south pole of the moon as both countries ramp up their lunar exploration ambitions.
China is looking to land spacecraft near permanently shadowed regions near the south pole of the moon to investigate the potential presence of resources trapped in craters.
China plans to set up a constellation around the moon to provide communication and navigation services for future complex operations on the lunar surface.