WASHINGTON: The space agencies of the United States and China are coordinating efforts on Moon exploration, NASA said Friday, as it navigates a strict legal framework aimed at protecting national security and preventing technology transfer to China, reports AFP.
“With the required approval from Congress, NASA has been in discussions with China to explore the possibility of observing a signature of the landing plume of their lunar lander, Chang’e 4, using our @NASAMoon spacecraft’s instrument,”NASA’s associate administrator for the science mission directorate, Thomas Zurbuchen, wrote on Twitter.
Zurbuchen’s tweet confirmed a similar statement made Monday by the deputy chief commander of China Lunar Exploration Program, Wu Yanhua.
NASA shared information from a US satellite while China told the Americans about the latitude, longitude and time of the landing “in a timely manner,” he said.
The hope was that NASA’s Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter (LRO) could observe the historic touchdown of the Chinese lander on January 3.