China might just have grown the first plant ever on the moon

China might just have grown the first plant ever on the moon

The probe took some cotton and potato seeds with it to see if scientists could get them to grow - and the China National Space Administration has now confirmed that the cotton seeds have indeed sprouted!

CNSA said the biological plants sent on the lunar mission had to pass strict requirements because of the extremely small size allowed in the cargo.

The mission already earned China a place in space history as the first country to land a spacecraft on the dark side of the moon, when the rover named Yutu 2, or Jade Rabbit 2, touched down on the satellite's largest and oldest impact crater, the South Pole-Aitken Basin earlier this month.

The "dark" side of the Moon may soon have a variety of vegetation growing there as China has begun its 100-day experiment to grow plants on the lunar surface. "Learning about these plants' growth in a low-gravity environment would allow us to lay the foundation for our future establishment of a space base", Professor Xie Gengxin, the experiment's chief designer, told the press.

A cotton seed carried to the Moon by China's recent Chang'e-4 probe has sprouted, the first for any biological matter to grow on the Moon, the media reported on Tuesday.

The cylindrical canister, in which the seeds were kept, also had fruit fly eggs and yeast to create a simple bio sphere inside.

China has sprouted the first seed on the Moon.

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Plants have been grown on the Moon for the first time ever by China's Chang'e-4 probe.

The space agency plans to launch a Chang'e-5 mission at the end of 2019 with the goal of collecting samples from the near side of the moon, Wu said.

China's Xinhua news agency said the cylinder canister, made from special aluminum alloy materials, was 198mm tall, 173mm in diameter and weighted 2.6kg. For example, potatoes serve as a good source and can make rapeseed oil which is similar to canola oil.

According to Fred Watson of the Australian Astronomical Observatory, the development represented a step in the right direction.

"It suggests that there might not be insurmountable problems for astronauts in future trying to grow their own crops on the moon in a controlled environment".

The plans underscore China's ambitions in space at a time when the U.S. is curtailing NASA's budget and increasingly handing over space exploration to commercial adventurers, the Washington Post reported on Monday.

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