On Sunday, China crashed a satellite onto the moon.  We are left to wonder on the Panopticonic why of it.

Images released by the Chinese government show that the lunar satellite circled the Earth three times before traveling toward the moon and circling it twice before its crash. The government said the Chang’e I was controlled remotely and began to reduce speed about 45 minutes before the crash. Images show the lunar satellite breaking apart on impact.

The deliberate crash of the lunar satellite aimed to give China experience for a moon landing in two years and eventual launch of an unmanned lunar rover, according to the report.

China hopes to collect soil and stone samples from the moon by 2017 and send a manned rover to the moon by 2020. The country also plans to build its own space station. After the Chang’e I crash, China announced plans to send a space module, Tiangong-I, next year. The government said Chinese astronauts will live in the module and research zero gravity.


You crash a satellite on the moon to “practice” moon landings.

What was really on that satellite that the Chinese didn’t want the world to know?

Crashing a multi-million dollar piece of equipment in such a public, dramatic, manner is more about making the news and sending a message than practicing a mock moon landing.

What is the message and who or what is the intended recipient?


  1. “You mess with us… we crash into you next!” is my best guess.

  2. I wonder, Gordon, if that satellite was doing some sort of test surveillance or something? It seems the idea behind the crashing is to destroy whatever was in that satellite.

  3. That’s just weird. China doesn’t ever admit defeat so calling it a crash on purpose doesn’t sound it. It could be a coded message like you say.

  4. Might they have had concerned that it would be captured by “the enemy” ?

  5. That’s what I’m thinking, Gordon. Perhaps some new technology or something weaponized. The only way to protect the secret is to destroy the whole thing.

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