Chinese lunar probe begins return to Earth with lunar samples

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China Lunar Sampling Probe is on his way home after over a week. Xinhua (via Reuters) reports that the Chang’e-5 orbiter-turner began its journey back to Earth with a shipment of moon rocks and soil. However, you will have to wait a while for the ship to return. The full mission was due to end in 23 days, so a landing in Mongolia is expected around December 16 or 17.

If successful, this will be the first batch of “fresh” Moon samples since the 1970s. China will also be only the third country to collect lunar soil after the United States and the Soviet Union. The probe was supposed to bring back about 4.4 pounds of samples, although it is not known exactly how many return to Earth.

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