China's first dark matter particles explorer has transmitted data back to earth from its first orbit. The explorer Wu Kong was launched a week ago from the Jiuquan Satellite Launch Center in northwest China.
The explorer is a space telescope used for the detection of high energy gamma rays, electrons and cosmic rays, to aid in the search for dark matter. The project is the result of a collaboration among universities in Italy, Switzerland, and the Chinese Academy of Sciences.
The explorer Wu Kong is named after Monkey King, the hero of China's classic tale. The name literally means "understand the void".
"We plan to spend two years surveying space, and another year focusing on certain directions for dark matter. Of course, the timetable can be changed,"
"Hopefully we will find some signs of dark matter in less than two years so that our search will soon focus on certain directions," said Dr. Chang Jin from Dark Matter Exploration Program.
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