Contrary to expectations, the Japanese man on the moon woke up at night

Contrary to expectations, the Japanese man on the moon woke up at night

Japanese moonwalker Slim has apparently defied death for the second time. The spacecraft shut down on Jan. 31 when the lunar night frost arrived, beginning a two-week sleep from which it was not expected to wake up. But Slim has now unexpectedly woken up and on Sunday, February 25th, at the command of the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA). has answered.

Jaksa Sunday He wrote in X: “Last night, a command was sent to Slim and a response was received confirming that the spacecraft had passed the lunar night and retained its communications capabilities.” However, Jaksa officials added that the communication with the moon was stopped shortly after; Because the increasingly hot conditions at the landing site near the lunar equator caused Slim’s instruments to overheat.

The moon’s reawakening is the second surprise revival of a Japanese lunar lander since landing on the moon’s surface on January 19. Slim (short for Intelligent Lunar Surveyor) despite making the most accurate lunar landing, accidentally landed upside down on the moon, forcing engineers to shut down the spacecraft shortly after because it wasn’t receiving enough sunlight to generate power. Nine days later, when the direction of sunlight changed enough to meet the needs of the spacecraft’s solar cells, Slim died.

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According to Jaksa, Slim’s survival is a remarkable event; Because this lunar rover is not designed to withstand the night of the moon. According to NASA, the lunar night is a period of 14 days during which most of the near side of the moon is deprived of sunlight and as a result, the surface temperature at the equator reaches minus 133 degrees Celsius.

Now that the day of the month has arrived, Slim has to endure extreme temperatures of up to 121 degrees Celsius. According to Jaksa, preparations are made to resume communication with the lander once the instruments have cooled sufficiently.

With Slim’s successful landing, Japan became the fifth country to reach the lunar surface after the former Soviet Union, the United States, China and India.

Before Slim, India’s Chandrayaan-3 lunar lander managed to land near the South Pole of the Moon on August 23, 2023. This spacecraft had the opportunity to study the area around it for almost two weeks and then had to turn off when the night of the moon came. Unlike Slim, the Indian lunar man did not wake up from his night’s sleep.

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