The Challenge of China's Lunar Lander

It has been nearly 50 years since an American became the first human being to walk on the Moon and plant the U.S. flag.  Judging from the successful landing of China's Chang'e-4 probe on the far side of the Moon and China's ambitious plans, including military ones, it may not be that long before a Chinese astronaut picks up that flag and brings it back to us. We have our own plans, to be sure, and that includes President Trump's already underway U.S. Space Force, yet we still are paying the price for the overreliance on private enterprise to do what needs to be done in space for both national security and, yes, national pride. Privatization has a role to play in space exploration, hopefully a more robust role than supplying the International Space Station with toilet paper using reusable booster rockets.  Yet the fact that it has been 50 years since we planted our flag on the lunar surface is a telling indictment of privatization of...(Read Full Article)
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