Lunar panorama: Chang'e 3 lander
China National Space Administration (Image credit: CNSA/Chinanews.com)
Chang'e 3 is a lunar exploration mission operated by the China National Space Administration (CNSA), incorporating a robotic lander and China's first lunar rover. It was launched in December 2013 as part of the second phase of the Chinese Lunar Exploration Program.
The spacecraft was named after Chang'e, the goddess of the Moon in Chinese mythology, and is a follow-up to the Chang'e 1 and Chang'e 2 lunar orbiters. The rover was named Yutu following an online poll, after the mythological rabbit that lives on the Moon as a pet of the Moon goddess.