China Declares Moon landing Ambitions


Wide photo of the Moon

While people around the world resolve to eat better and go to the gym, the People’s Republic of China has a more ambitious New Year’s Resolution: land on the moon.

Beginning as early as 2007, China has always been interested in exploring outer space the way the Americans and Soviets used to. The fact they have the money to finance these scientific pursuits is evidence of a growing economy; many believe it to be the sign of an emerging new superpower. Resembling (in many ways) the United States in the early part of the 20th century, at least from an economic perspective.

In July of 2017, the Chinese rocket Long March 5 lifted off on a test run. The live broadcast was cut short when the Chinese National Space Administration (CNSA) declared the rocket to be off-course and a failure. In spite of the setback, the Long March 5 is set to be the first rocket to bring humans back to the moon in nearly 30 years.

In fact, China’s plans go beyond merely following in the footsteps of America in 1969. They intend on being the first to land on the far side of the moon and laying the groundwork for a sustainable habitat for long-term occupation with seeds for agriculture and even silkworm eggs to produce carbon dioxide. This rivals significantly the ambitions of NASA.

On top of all that, the Chinese lunar lander is expected to take samples of rocks back to Earth to be studied.

The mission will be called “Chang’e-5,” named after the Chinese moon goddess, Chang’e. Some speculate that, after the failed launch in 2017, the landing will be set back another year or two, but it will be a significant progression in space exploration that mankind has not seen in a long time.

If the United States wishes to reign supreme in the area of space exploration (which is somewhat indicative of overall technological advancement), then we must unleash the only weapon that we have. The United States' greatest weapon is the power of the free market to incentivize innovation like no other. It is only through the privatization of space exploration that we can maximize our potential, as there is no greater force for technological improvement that could possibly rival that of the profit incentive.

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