• None On the same day that China collected lunar rocks in a groundbreaking space mission, a critical US telescope at the Arecibo Observatory in Puerto Rico collapsed.
• None The observatory, built in 1963, was a beacon for US astronomical research, lasted through natural disasters, and inspired generations of Puerto Rican researchers.
• None China’s successful accomplishment with the Chang’e-5 probe is the first time since the 1970s that lunar samples have been collected, and if the spacecraft returns to Earth safely in mid-December, will mark a massive step forward in space exploration.
On Tuesday, the United States and China experienced vastly different events in the world of space exploration and observation.
The Arecibo Observatory, a colossal telescope located in Puerto Rico, collapsed after deteriorating sharply since August. The Arecibo Observatory had been operating as a center for astronomical observations for 57 years.
Meanwhile, far from the Earth’s atmosphere, the unmanned Chang’e-5 probe, a Chinese spacecraft, landed on the moon to bring lunar materials back to Earth for the first time in almost 50 years, the Chinese government announced.
China’s moon landing and retrieval of lunar rocks mark the first time a country has acquired sample materials from the moon since the Soviet Union’s Luna 24 mission in 1976, according to NASA.
US astronauts in NASA’s Apollo program last retrieved over 800 pounds of lunar samples between 1969 and 1972. Read from source….