China will seek to establish an global lunar base one day, possibly using 3D printing technology to build facilities, the Chinese space agency said Monday, weeks after landing a rover on the moon's far side.
The state-run China Daily said this was the first such collaboration since an American law banned joint space projects with China that do not have prior congressional approval.
The future launches will culminate with a mission to test equipment for an worldwide moon research base, Wu Yanhua, deputy chief commander of China's Lunar Exploration Programme, said at a press briefing.
The state-run China Daily said that was the first such form of cooperation since the 2011 USA law was enacted.
The Chang'e 4 was set to enter a low-power sleep mode over the weekend as the sun set on its landing site.
Li Chunlai, deputy director of the National Astronomical Observatories of China and commander-in-chief of the ground application system of Chang'e 4, revealed that one of the images of the "dark" side of the Moon is a 360-degree panorama that was made by combining 80 photos.
Since the lunar far side never faces the Earth, China had to send a satellite to relay messages to Earth from the Rover.
"There were many things to catch up on, and fewer things in which we could surpass others", he said.
'The far side of the moon is a rare quiet place that is free from interference of radio signals from Earth, ' mission spokesman Yu Guobin said, according to Chinese state media Xinhua.
Wu Yanhua said the Chang'e 4 was originally built as a "backup product" for Chang'e 3. He said the spending needed to refit it for its new objective was akin to repairing a short section of subway line.
Around the end of this year, China plans to launch Chang'e 5, which is to collect and bring back samples from the near side of the moon, the first time that has been done since 1976.
The country has also said that it will welcome scientists and astronauts from around the world to make use of its space station, which is slated for completion by 2022.