Open

Coming up

Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

MEDIAWATCH

Netanyahu deletes tweet featuring photo of James Foley

Read more

THE WORLD THIS WEEK

The World This Week - 22 August 2014 (part 2)

Read more

THE WORLD THIS WEEK

The World This Week - 22 August 2014

Read more

FRANCE IN FOCUS

FRANCE IN FOCUS

Read more

FOCUS

Lifting the veil over China's air pollution

Read more

ENCORE!

Tango Takeover in Paris

Read more

WEB NEWS

Calls for ISIS media blackout after execution of James Foley

Read more

IN THE PAPERS

'Steely resolve of reporters exploited by pared-down employers'

Read more

BUSINESS DAILY

US judge calls Argentina bond swap offer illegal

Read more

  • French teenage girls held over Syria jihad plans

    Read more

  • Good borders make good neighbours, Merkel tells Ukraine

    Read more

  • Bombs across Iraq kill dozens as violence escalates

    Read more

  • Iceland issues aviation alert on volcano activity

    Read more

  • France will not be 'be pushed around' by Germany

    Read more

  • Libya withdraws as Africa Cup of Nations host

    Read more

  • ‘European GPS’ satellites launched into wrong orbit

    Read more

  • Video: Israel bombs kidnapping suspect’s home

    Read more

  • US brands journalist’s beheading a ‘terrorist attack’

    Read more

  • Ebola prompts Philippines to recall UN troops in Liberia

    Read more

  • Besieged by problems, Hollande faces unhappy return from summer holidays

    Read more

  • US sued over ‘deportation mill’ in New Mexico

    Read more

  • Colombian army and FARC rebels in face-to-face talks

    Read more

  • US National Guard starts to pull out of embattled Ferguson

    Read more

  • US job market yet to recover from recession, says Fed Chair

    Read more

  • August 22, 1914: The bloodiest day in French military history

    Read more

  • Fear of Ebola sky-high among Air France workers

    Read more

Asia-pacific

China launches its first lunar rover mission

© AFP

Text by FRANCE 24

Latest update : 2013-12-01

China on Monday launched its first ever moon rover mission, becoming the third nation to do so as the country advances its ambitious space programme.

China on Monday launched its first ever lunar rover, marking a milestone development in the country's ambitious space exploration programme, state TV showed.

The Chang'e Three rocket carrying the unmanned buggie took off at around 1.30 a.m. (Sunday 0530 GMT), the CCTV official broadcaster showed in live footage from the Xichang Satellite Launch Center in China's southwest.

The "Jade Rabbit" vehicle, named after a rabbit in Chinese folklore that lives on the moon as lunar goddess Chang’e’s pet, will be the world’s third rover mission to land on the moon, with both the United States and the former Soviet Union having done so previously.

The mission is aimed at exploring the moon’s surface and to look for rare metals.

Advancing China's space programme has been a priority for the leadership, with President Xi Jinping calling for China to establish itself as a space superpower. Scientists have discussed the possibility of building a space station by 2020 and then sending a man to the moon.

Beijing insists its space programme is for peaceful purposes, but the US Defence Department has highlighted China's increasing space capabilities and said it was pursuing a variety of activities aimed at preventing its adversaries from using space-based assets during a crisis.

(FRANCE 24 with AFP)

Date created : 2013-12-01

  • UNITED STATES

    NASA launches spacecraft to study Mars atmosphere

    Read more

  • SPACE

    ISS astronauts make rare emergency spacewalk

    Read more

  • JAPAN

    Kirobo the talking robot rockets into space

    Read more

COMMENT(S)