China Focus: China delivers Chang'e-6 mission cube satellite data to Pakistan-Xinhua

China Focus: China delivers Chang'e-6 mission cube satellite data to Pakistan

Source: Xinhua

Editor: huaxia

2024-05-10 20:13:16

BEIJING, May 10 (Xinhua) -- China on Friday delivered data provided by a cube satellite aboard its Chang'e-6 spacecraft to Pakistan, deepening cooperation on lunar exploration between the two countries.

Zhang Kejian, head of the China National Space Administration (CNSA), handed a data carrier to Pakistani Ambassador to China Khalil-ur-Rahman Hashmi at a ceremony held in Beijing.

The cube satellite, ICUBE-Q, was developed by Pakistan's Institute of Space Technology and China's Shanghai Jiao Tong University. The Chang'e-6 lunar probe was launched on May 3 and carried four international payloads, including ICUBE-Q.

ICUBE-Q separated from the Chang'e-6 orbiter on May 8 to carry out exploration activities such as capturing images of the moon.

The Chang'e-6 spacecraft, which successfully performed a near-moon braking procedure and entered the lunar orbit on May 8, is operating normally, with subsequent flight control work to be carried out as planned, said Ge Ping, deputy director of the CNSA's Lunar Exploration and Space Engineering Center.

Both China and Pakistan attach great importance to this cooperation. During the development of the payload, government organs and scientific institutions in both countries made significant preparations, Ge said.

"I believe that this cooperation is of great significance to promoting friendly relations between the two countries and enriching people's understanding of the moon," he added.

The ICUBE-Q satellite is the result of the first lunar exploration cooperation project between China and Pakistan. The project was guided by the principles of equality, mutual benefits, the peaceful utilization of space and inclusive development. It will also enhance the friendship between the two countries and expand diverse cooperation in the field of aerospace, Ge said.

"We will share our scientific achievements to lay the foundation for future lunar exploration activities, which will be of great significance to promoting the construction of a global community with a shared future in outer space," he added.

He noted that China and Pakistan have signed a cooperation agreement on the International Lunar Research Station. China has received Pakistan's application for payload cooperation on the Chang'e-8 mission, and its application to borrow lunar samples returned by the Chang'e-5 mission. Relevant work is progressing steadily.

"We welcome Pakistan's participation in China's lunar and deep space exploration missions, and we will conduct extensive exchanges and cooperation related to space technology, space science and space applications to contribute to the peaceful use of outer space and serve civilization and global well-being," Ge said.

The launch of the Chang'e-6 mission is a model example of international cooperation in action. It demonstrated that China acts on its word, and that it undertakes meaningful cooperation and extends meaningful assistance to developing countries, Khalil-ur-Rahman Hashmi said.

Pakistan's involvement in ICUBE-Q is a testament to the fact that the country is also making progress in space exploration and technology, he said.

This mission will open up opportunities for Pakistan to explore the deep space environment and study the dynamics and geography of the moon. It will also give impetus to higher education in the space sciences in Pakistan, said Syed Amer Ahsan Gilani, deputy director-general of the Satellite Manufacturing Department of the Pakistan Space and Upper Atmosphere Research Commission.

"Space cooperation between China and Pakistan is a vital aspect of our bilateral relations," Khalil-ur-Rahman Hashmi said. The two countries have drawn a concrete roadmap for future collaboration on space exploration, knowledge and research exchange visits, and knowledge transfers and resource-sharing, he added.