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China's Moon Rover Performs First Lunar Probe
SOURCE: Xinhua     UPDATED: 2014-01-16

BEIJING, Jan. 14 (Xinhua) -- China's moon rover "Yutu", or Jade Rabbit, completed its first scientific exploration of lunar soil on Tuesday, the Beijing Aerospace Control Center (BACC) said.

The rover used its mechanical arm to survey the lunar soil at 21:45 Beijing Time, following instructions from the control center, according to a BACC statement.

The exploration lasted about half an hour and every operation was precisely performed by the rover, it said.

The rover completed an arm flexing assessment on Dec. 23, a key test before beginning the soil survey and other work on the surface, said the center.

Yutu will survey the moon's geological structure and surface substances and look for natural resources for three months, while the lander will conduct in-situ exploration at the landing site for one year.