Everything is going well 9 days after China's Chang'e-4 mission made a historic landing on the far side of the Moon, the country's space program said today. On 6 January, the Yutu-2 rover started a planned midday nap to avoid overheating while the Sun was directly overhead. Yesterday, it woke up and continued exploring its surroundings. Additionally, a fresh batch of images and video are revealing more about the mission's landing site within Von Kármán crater.
China's lunar and deep space exploration program, CLEP, reports both the Chang'e-4 lander and Yutu-2 rover are healthy, and "Chinese and foreign scientific loads were working normally [Translated]." Here are portraits of each vehicle on the surface; unfortunately, neither of these released by CLEP are full-resolution based on what we know about the camera specs:
The lander also completed a 360-degree panorama:
We're also seeing some more previously unreleased goodies, including this amazing video of the landing:
Chang'e-4 descent video This video shows Chang'e-4's descent into Von Kármán crater on 3 January 2019. Touchdown occured at 10:26 Beijing time (02:26 UTC, 22:26 EST 2 January). The video was captured using Chang'e-4's Landing Camera (LCAM).Video: CNSA / CLEP
Here are two videos Yutu-2 being deployed and rolling on the surface. Thanks to China space program reporter Andrew Jones for helping us find the source files for these!
Chang'e-4 deploys Yutu-2 rover This video shows China's Yutu-2 rover rolling off the Chang'e-4 lander in Von Kármán crater on 3 January 2019.Video: CNSA / CLEP / processed by Emily Lakdawalla
Yutu-2 rolls across the surface This video shows China's Yutu-2 rover rolling across the lunar surface after its initial deployment from Chang'e-4.Video: CNSA / CLEP
And a screenshot showing where the rover apparently roved thus far:
We will update this post with additional images and video, and better-quality versions as we find them!