BEIJING, June 2 (China Space News) -- A Chinese relay satellite Friday braked near the Moon, completing a vital step before entering a desired orbit.
The satellite, Queqiao, braked 100 km above the surface of the Moon in line with instructions from a ground control center in Beijing, and then entered a transfer orbit from the moon to the second Lagrangian (L2) point of the Earth-Moon system.
The relay satellite was launched Monday to set up a communication link between Earth and the planned Chang'e-4 lunar probe that will explore the Moon's mysterious far side.
The satellite is expected to adjust orbit several times before it reaches a halo orbit around the L2 point, about 455,000 km from the Earth.
It will be the world's first communication satellite operating in that orbit.