Chinese Chang’e 4 lunar lander cotton seeds are growing

Katie Ramirez
November 30, 2019

The China National Space Administration (CNSA) stashed cotton, rape, potato and rockcress seeds aboard the Chang'e lander, which was Earth's first spacecraft to successfully touch down on the far side of the Moon earlier this month having blasted off at the start of December.

China wants to be the first country to establish a base on the moon and will be using 3D printing technology to build facilities, the Chinese space agency said Monday, weeks after landing a rover on the far side of the moon.

The cotton along with potato seed, fruit-fly eggs, arabidopsis - a small, flowering plant of the mustard family - and yeast landed on the moon January 3 aboard the Chang'e 4 lander.

The rover's mission won't only be about snapping cool pictures; it's also scheduled to perform several experiments, including testing how plants will grow in the low-gravity environment, and exploring the moon's poles in search of water and other resources.

Cotton seeds planted on the far side of the Moon have sprouted for the first time, according to the Chinese space agency.

The United States government and NASA had hitherto prohibited from working with China's space agency and state-owned companies.

Moon-related prophecies of doom have been around for quite a while, all of them going back to a biblical prediction, but at this point in time they have earned even more attention due to the blood moon expected to soon appear on the horizon.

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This seed experiment was created to test how space impacts photosynthesis and respiration.

Matt Damon, eat your heart out - China's growing plants in space!

BEIJING-China is open to global cooperation in its future space missions, officials from the Chinese National Space Administration (CNSA) said Monday at a press conference on the Chang'e-4 probe.

Could more veggies come to the moon soon? The three-kilogram container was designed by 28 Chinese educational institutions, and enabled the plants and organisms to have good air, nutrients, and water to sprout in an Earth-like environment. Some other seeds that reportedly sprouted include rapeseed and potato seeds.

The seeds and fruit fly eggs were made dormant using unspecified "biological technology", during the 20-day journey to the Moon, Xinhua reported. We could probably make some nice sweaters from moon-grown cotton.

Basking the mission's success, the China National Space Administration discussed plans for future missions.

Aside from the nation's lunar missions, and a possible probe to Mars around 2020, China is also forging ahead with its orbital station - a project it hopes to have finished by the end of 2022, with the help of countries such as Russia, Germany and France.

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