China’s Moon plants are dead after freezing temperatures killed them
(Credit: Chinese Lunar Exploration Program/ CHONGQING UNIVERSITY)
So much for growing plants on the Moon.
China has said that the cotton seedlings it planted on the Moon have died as a result of the extreme cold temperatures on the lunar surface, according to Hong Kong news outletGB Times.
During a news conference on Wednesday, the project’s leader, Liu Hanlong, said temperatures fell inside the biosphere on the far side of the Moon, the plants withered and eventually were unable to withstand the conditions.
Hanlong was quoted as saying that the temperature had fallen to minus 62 degrees Fahrenheit and could plunge to as low as minus 292 degrees Fahrenheit.
For comparison purposes, the coldest recorded temperature on Earth is minus 128.6 Fahrenheit, which was measured at the Soviet Vostok Station in Antarctica on July 21, 1983.
Due to the fact there is no onboard mechanism to keep the experiment warm without the aid of sunlight, the experiment is now effectively over,Live Science reports.
The world’s most populous country made headlines this week when it announced it had planted cotton seeds that had started to sprout.