China’s First Moon Rover Sputters Back Into Life

Could this be a second chance for Jade Rabbit?

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Peter Parks / AFP / Getty Images

The Chinese lunar rover Jade Rabbit landed on the moon in December

Jade Rabbit, the Chinese lunar rover that experienced mechanical problems last month, could potentially be saved, state media reports.

The moon rover was officially declared dead on Wednesday after it failed to awake from its scheduled sleep during the lunar night, but on Thursday it was awake and able to pick up signals.

“It came back to life! At least it is alive and so it is possible we could save it,” Pei Zhaoyu, spokesman for the lunar programme, said according to the official Xinhua news agency.

China is the third country in the world, after the United States and the Soviet Union, to complete a lunar rover mission. Jade Rabbit landed Dec. 15 and the mission was expected to last for three months.