The US robotic rover Perseverance has successfully landed on Mars which was a part of the mission Mars2020. Perseverance was soon followed by China’s Zhourong.
These two were the fifth and sixth planetary rovers landed on Moon.
Chang’E-4 lander and its Yutu-2 rover were the first to be landed on the far side of the moon in 2019. This has made a milestone in planetary exploration.
The Yutu-2 rover has used ground-penetrating radar through which scientists can clearly understand the layers beneath the moon’s surface and how the planet has evolved.
The far side of the moon is an important area for scientists due to its geological formations. It blocks all the electromagnetic noise which makes it a better place for building radio telescopes.
This was the first time of using ground-penetrating radar on rovers. It will help to understand the subsurface of landing sites and what is happening below the ground.
GPR has the ability to collect information about a planet’s soil and its subsurface layers. This information will give scientists better insights about the geological evolution of the planet.
The first on-site GPR data was provided by Chang’E-3, E-4 and E-5 lunar missions. This data is about the investigation of the structure of surface layers of the far side of the moon.
Though the GPR cannot detect gradual variations from one layer to another of the surface. This is why the team has developed a new method which will help them to detect the layers that are hidden inside rocks and boulders. The new method has been used to process the GPR data captured by Yutu-2 rover which landed on moon’s Aitken Basin.
The Aitken basin is known to be created by a meteoroid impact. The detection tool has revealed a layered structure in the first 10m of moon which was previously unseen.
Scientists will use this method to more accurate estimations about the depth of the top surface of lunar soil. This will estimate the stability and strength of the soil foundation for establishing research stations.
The newly discovered complex layered structure suggests the overall evolution of lunar craters.