China’s moon lander Chang’e-3 enters 28th lunar day

China says its first moon lander, Chang’e-3, awakened automatically on Thursday.

The spacecraft now enters its 28th lunar day after “sleeping” during the lunar night.

Chang’e-3 has stood the test of extreme low temperatures during the past lunar nights since its successful soft landing on the moon in December 2013.

Though the moon lander has exceeded its designed life by 14 months, the astronomical telescope and other surveying devices it is carrying still work well.

Researchers say the engineering and scientific data it has transmitted will pave the way for scientific research and future lunar probes, and the data is globally accessible.

Officials say preparation for the country’s next lunar probe mission, Chang’e-5, is under way, and it is expected to be launched around 2017.

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