For the first time in history, the North American Space Agency (NASA) intends to land on the so-called “hidden side” of the Moon, the part of satellite which is not visible from the Land

Although it is an unprecedented experiment for the American space agency, it will not be the first time that the other side of the Moon will be explored. THE China arrived there in 2019 when the Chang'e 4 space probe landed there.


Its objective was to study the mineral composition, terrain, relief and the composition of the layer below the lunar surface. It also had the mission of carrying out astronomical observations through low radio frequencies, the so-called radio astronomy.

First image of the dark side of the Moon taken by the Chang'e 4 probe, in 2019.
Image: National Space Administration of China/Xinhua News Agency via AP

NASA aims to return astronauts to the moon

The agency selected three new scientific research payloads for its initiative called Commercial Lunar Payload Services (CLPS). Two of these payloads include probes and research instruments to study the unseen part of the Moon.

These are the first selections of the agency's Payloads and Moon Surface Research Investigations (PRISM) proposals. All initiatives are part of the Artemis mission, to bring astronauts back to the lunar surface.

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“With each new PRISM selection, we will build our capabilities to enable more and better science and prove the technology that will help pave the way for astronauts to return to the Moon through the Artemis program,” said Joel Kearns, Deputy Associate Board Administrator from NASA's Scientific Mission, in a declaration to the institution's Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) website.

Payloads target Schrödinger Crater

Two of the payloads that will be sent to the Moon are targeting a large crater known as the Schrödinger Crater.

These loads will include the Farside Sismic Suite (Far Side Seismic Suite), which will measure the seismic activity (or seismicity) of the region; in addition to the Lunar Inner Materials and Temperature Set, which will collect data on the Moon's internal heat flux, according to the JPL. Seismic activity refers to the frequency, type and size of earthquakes recorded over a period of time in the region.

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