Root NationNewsSLIM sent valuable data on ten moon rocks to Earth

SLIM sent valuable data on ten moon rocks to Earth


The Japan Landing Module (SLIM) captured and transmitted analysis data of 10 lunar rocks, a more-than-expected achievement that could help find clues about the moon’s origins, a Japan Space Agency official said Wednesday.

For four days, the Smart Lander for Lunar Exploration (SLIM), which landed on the moon last month, used its multi-band spectral camera to study the composition of rocks and also worked on studying the lunar surface, according to Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency project manager Shinichiro Sakai. breeds

The mission to the moon is the first for Japan. The lander made a historic precision landing on January 20, although it landed incorrectly, its solar panels initially did not see the sun and shut down after a brief contact with Earth. But on the eighth day, they worked, which made it possible to successfully restore communication with the JAXA command centre on Earth.


A black-and-white photograph transmitted shortly after SLIM reactivation showed the uneven lunar surface, including six rocks. In the end, the module received data from 10 rocks, each of which was assigned the names of dog breeds, such as “Aquitaine”, “Beagle” and “Shibain”.

“We hope that the analysis of the rocks will lead us to the origin of the moon,” says Sakai. According to him, by comparing the mineral composition of lunar and terrestrial rocks, it is possible to find out whether they have common elements. According to the “giant collision” hypothesis, it is believed that the Moon was formed as a result of a collision between the Earth and another planet, from which a smaller planet broke away.

The JAXA team had expected SLIM to study and analyse only one rock, so obtaining data on 10 rocks was cause for celebration, prompting the team to further study the Moon’s origins.

SLIM is currently “hibernating” on another lunar night, which will last until the end of February. It remains to be seen whether the probe and its spectroscope will survive the harsh nighttime temperatures and whether it will be able to “wake up” when sunlight returns.

The lander landed about 55 meters from its target, near the Shioli Crater, a region covered in volcanic rock. This is the most precise landing compared to previous lunar missions, which typically targeted flat areas at least 10 km wide.


Had the lander not encountered a last-minute malfunction in one of its two main engines, resulting in a harder-than-planned landing, JAXA estimates SLIM would have landed within meters of its target.

SLIM carried two autonomous probes that were launched just before landing, recording landing, environmental and other lunar data. The two smaller probes completed their initial SLIM recording mission and then retired.

The landing made Japan the fifth country in the world to reach the moon, after the United States, the Soviet Union, China and India.

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