From: John Baruch, Visiting Professor, Leeds Beckett University.
Sir Edward Appleton, the Yorkshire scientist born in Bradford who discovered the ionosphere and realised its importance for radio communications and its limitations for astronomy would be delighted with the landing of the Chinese spacecraft Chang’e 4 landing on the far side of the Moon and its implications for science. He received the Nobel Prize for his discovery.
Landing away from the equator is much more difficult as is landing away from the gaze of the Earth on the far side of the Moon – congratulations China.
It is also a great step for science. There is a great hole in our understanding of the universe. Nearly everything that we know about the universe comes from radiation which includes X-rays, light waves and radio waves, but we are severely restricted by radio pollution when we try to see with radio waves from the Earth or anywhere visible from the Earth.
The South Pole of the Moon is the area where all the future commercial and science sites are likely to be. It has water at the bottom of deep craters that never see any sunlight.
It is also a wonderful place for space tourism and to gaze at our wonderful Earthly home.