The National Space Administration of China announced urgent changes in the program of the lunar rover Yutu 2. The device just recently, on February 6, returned from sleep mode, where it was leaving during a cold moonlit night. In one of the last images of the lunar surface, sent before the disconnection of communication, he captured something unusual, for which the scientists decided to change the route of the lunar rover.
The find is a strangely shaped stone that looks like a fragment of a slab protruding from the regolith. Scientists are confused by the vertical arrangement and sharp, pronounced edges of the cobblestone. The fact is that many different processes take place on the lunar surface, such as meteorite strikes or thermal expansion of the soil, but they are all cyclical, which is similar to the movement of the surf, which is sometimes interrupted by storms. As a result, most of the rocks are rounded, cut like sea pebbles. But not this stone.
The most realistic version is that the stone is very young, it was formed as a result of a rock split from the impact of a meteorite, or it is itself a fragment of it. To check this, you need to bring the lunar rover close and use the VNIS spectrometer, which will determine the composition of the material. At a minimum, scientists hope to find out if the object is local, part of the Moon, or something exotic, a guest from the outside. And if the second is true, then the mission will have a new interesting goal – to look around the area and try to understand where it came from.