BEIJING, Jan. 31 (Xinhua) -- The rover and the lander of the Chang'e-4 probe have been awakened by sunlight after a long "sleep" during the first extremely cold night on the moon, the China National Space Administration (CNSA) announced on Thursday.
The lander woke up at 8:39 p.m. Wednesday, and the rover, Yutu-2 (Jade Rabbit-2), awoke at about 8:00 p.m. Tuesday, surviving their first lunar night after making the first-ever soft landing on the far side of the moon, said CNSA.
Both the lander and the rover ended the dormant mode automatically according to the elevation angle of the sunlight. And the key instruments on the probe have started to work.
Currently, the rover is located about 18 meters northwest of the lander. Communication and data transmission between ground control and the probe via the relay satellite Queqiao (Magpie Bridge) are stable, said CNSA.
A lunar day equals 14 days on Earth, and a lunar night is the same length. The Chang'e-4 probe switched to a dormant mode during the lunar night due to the lack of solar power.
China's Chang'e-4 probe, launched on Dec. 8 in 2018, landed on the Von Karman Crater in the South Pole-Aitken Basin on the far side of the moon on Jan. 3.