BEIJING, Oct. 17 (Xinhuanet) -- To carry out deep space exploration with a lunar probe will be the inevitable choice of China's space program, a senior space scientist said here Monday morning.
The lunar probe program will be accomplished in three steps, namely lunar orbiting, lunar landing and return from the moon, Xu Dazhe, deputy general manager of China Aerospace Science and Technology Group Ltd., said at a press conference of the State Council Information Office.
"The corporation is participating in the research and development of the Chang'e-1 lunar probe and related launch vehicle," Xu said.
He added that "Development of Chang'e-1 lunar probe is now wellunder way as planned."
Tang Xianming, director of China Manned Space Engineering Office, said the lunar probe program is mainly undertaken by the nation's aerospace agency. Independent from the current manned space program, the lunar probe program is another branch of China's space exploration, Tang added.