China to press ahead with plans to bring rocks back from Mars by 2030 after the success of its Chang'e-5 lunar sample-return mission
Successfully returning the first samples of Moon rock to the Earth in 45 years isn't enough for the Chinese space agency, who have their sights set on Mars.
The China National Space Administration (CNSA) previously announced plans to send a sample-return mission to the Martian surface by 2030 and after the success of the Chang'e-5 Moon mission, officials confirmed Mars was next.
Speaking at a press conference after the retrieval of Moon rocks, Wu Yanhau, deputy director of the CNSA said the Mars mission would be 'implemented as planned'.
No specific date or details of the mission have been confirmed, but when it was first reported in 2012 it was said to include remote sensing, a soft landing and return.
Reports suggest that the first samples from Mars would be returned to Earth by 2031, which is the same year samples from a joint NASA/ESA mission are due to return.
China has had a string of successful missions to the Moon, including the first rover on the far side and bringing the first samples back in over 45 years.
Bringing samples of rock and dust back from Mars would be a significant step up in China's increasingly ambitious mission to be seen as a global space superpower.
China currently has a spacecraft, Tianwen-1, on the way to Mars, scheduled to arrive in orbit in early February and place a rover on the surface two or three months later.
Cappuccino kid, Leicester, United Kingdom
How about an apology for starting a global pandemic?
queenbee, South, United Kingdom
We give them foreign aid for this!
Stack333, Lincoln, United Kingdom
They don't need our foreign aid
NM2, notts, United Kingdom
And we're stupidly paying them foreign aid money.
Donkey-oh-tee, Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia
Not only does China have designs for world domination, but they also have designs on dominating other worlds too
Thomas Covenant , Somewhere Out There, United Kingdom
So polluting the planet with their virus , and probably the moon as well . Next target Mars
Yorkshire0, Sheffield, United Kingdom
The problem as I see it is what else comes back with these rocks ?
Homer_Simpson, Springfield, United States
If we did this, it would be a great achievement for the mankind. If China did this, since they are barbaric people we should shoot their spaceship down to show our superiority.
aberdan, up north, United Kingdom
Marsflu coming to you by 2031.
Duble G, Manchester, United Kingdom
I'd prefer China migrates there
Northernlass20, Up North, United Kingdom
Are they going to eat them.
paulstan, Carlisle, United Kingdom
Oh sounds great , so let's give them some more foreign aid to help them.
Man58, Leeds, United Kingdom
Lulubluebelle, Warwickshire, United Kingdom
Can't we leave anything alone..
JustAnotherVoice, Camp Geiger, United States
There is something about space exploration that speaks to me about human potential.
Carol, Swansea, United Kingdom
Probably looking for incurable viruses!
EX Eu prisoner , Krankieshire Scotland , United Kingdom
And Mars rocks on aliexpress the next day
Bananabox, London, United Kingdom
Good luck to them...beware finding stowaways on return though...
Blue Avid, London
Just went to a kitchen wares shop, everything made in China. All we're doing in this country is supporting other countries.
K8driver, Midlands, United Kingdom
So why can't they launch it now then..