A mystery that has not yet found a definitive and official answer: on its 36th day of exploration of the Moon , the Chinese rover Yutu 2 spotted something strange on the surface of our satellite, a sort of cube-shaped protrusion that stands out on the barren landscape and dotted with craters that we have come to know. And the question bounces back: what is it about?
To date, the answer must wait. Yutu 2 is located in the Von Karman crater , about 80 meters from what in China they have renamed “mysterious hut”: a short distance, but the rover cannot travel it quickly and will therefore take the next 2-3 months to reach the object. . Yutu 2 is in fact powered by solar energy, and during the night – which on the Moon lasts two weeks – it must turn off to avoid overheating. The rover also advances very slowly, even in the light of the crater-studded and impervious lunar surface.
What is the mysterious cube on the moon
Waiting for clearer and closer images, scientists have dedicated themselves to hypothesizing what that mysterious cubic object could be, also throwing water on the fire of enthusiasm related to alien presences. The most likely thing is that it is a rock formation or boulder that has taken that shape – which from a distance looks so square, but it must be remembered that these are images transmitted by the Moon – due to the impact with some kind. of space body.
The image of the mysterious cube was released by Our Space , the dissemination channel affiliated with the Chinese Space Agency (CNSA), which also recalled that near the cube there is a large crater generated by a small impact with a body. space. It is an eventuality that often occurs especially on that part of the moon, and which has already provided a lot of material for discussion to scientists. Next to it is a large crater due to a small impact “added the scientists of Our Space. The cube is not the first oddity that Yutu 2 has discovered on the perpetually hidden side of the Earth: in 2019 the rover came across a very particular substance that at the time was defined as “gel-like”, but more solid, and which turned out to be a molten rock in glass, again due to an impact on the lunar surface.
China’s moon mission with Yutu 2
Yutu 2 was launched on December 7, 2018, and entered the lunar orbit on December 12, landing on the far side on January 3, 2019 . It is the first rover to operate on the far side of the moon, and in December 2021, about a year after launch, it traveled 840 meters on its surface.
Once he landed, Yutu 2 – which means “jade rabbit” – immediately set out to explore the Von Karman crater , about 186 kilometers wide. A few days after landing, Yutu-2 shut down for the first lunar night, and resumed operations on January 29, 2019, with all instruments operational. During its first full lunar day, the rover traveled 120 meters, and on February 11, 2019, it shut down for its second lunar night.
In December 2019, Yutu 2 broke the lunar longevity record previously held by the Soviet Union’s Lunokhod 1 rover, which operated on the lunar surface for eleven lunar days (321 Earth days) and traveled a total distance of 10.54 km. A few months later, in February 2020, Chinese scientists reported, for the first time, a high-resolution image of a sequence of lunar ejecta , or the material launched during impacts with other bodies that, on the far side of the Moon , occur much more frequently than the side facing the Earth.
Yutu 2 is the protagonist of the Chang’e 4 mission, the fourth mission to the Moon in China and the second that involves the use of a rover. The first two missions, Chang’e 1 and Chang’e 2, were orbiting, while Chang’e 3 landed on the Earth’s closest side of the moon with the first Yutu rover. China also launched the Chang’e 5 T1 test mission around the moon, and the mission to return a lunar sample, Chang’e 5, to Earth.