China says it has landed its first probe on Mars

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China has landed its first spacecraft on Mars, according to the state-run Xinhua News Agency.

The Chinese National Space Administration launched the Tianwen-1 mission in July 2020 with the aim of landing a rover on the Red Planet.

The ship reached Mars orbit in February and stayed there for two months to collect data on potential landing sites, the report said, before landing on Friday.

CHINE’S ROGUE LONG MARS 5B ROCKET DEBRIS LAND IN THE INDIAN OCEAN

China had previously said it expected to land between Saturday and Wednesday.

A photo taken on March 18, 2021 shows an image of Mars captured by China's Tianwen-1 probe.  (CNSA / Document via Xinhua)
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A photo taken on March 18, 2021 shows an image of Mars captured by China’s Tianwen-1 probe. (CNSA / Document via Xinhua)

The United States has explored the surface of Mars for years, and NASA aims to send a manned mission to the planet by the mid-2030s.

NASA’s last Perseverance rover landed in February, and the Ingenuity Mars helicopter took off in the Martian skies last month.

And Elon Musk’s SpaceX also hopes to deploy a reusable transportation system to travel between the third and fourth planets in the solar system as early as 2026.

But China has pushed for an ambitious expansion of its space capabilities – prompting criticism of practices that other space nations have called irresponsible at best.

A woman wearing a mask speaks on her phone near a Mars rover exhibit in Beijing on Friday, May 14, 2021. China says its Mars probe and the accompanying rover have landed on the Red Planet.  (AP Photo / Ng Han Guan)

A woman wearing a mask speaks on her phone near a Mars rover exhibit in Beijing on Friday, May 14, 2021. China says its Mars probe and the accompanying rover have landed on the Red Planet. (AP Photo / Ng Han Guan)

Its most recent Long March 5B rocket crashed in the Indian Ocean near the Maldives over the weekend, after going past launch and orbiting, from where it ultimately fell in an uncontrolled reentry. .

The 18th Space Force Space Control Squadron warned last week that there was a low risk of impact at sites in Costa Rica, Haiti, Australia, Spain, Italy, Greece, Arabia Arabia, Jordan and New Zealand.

“It is clear that China does not meet responsible standards regarding its space debris,” said Senator Bill Nelson, administrator of NASA in response.

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It happened almost a year to the day after another Long March 5B rocket stage crashed in a rural West African village – traveling so fast it also ran out of little debris from rain over New York.

All other space-capable nations closely control their first-stage rockets, and they safely splash into the ocean before entering orbit or – in SpaceX’s case – return to the surface in a controlled descent for reuse. .

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