Published: Fri, October 19, 2018
Science | By Michele Flores

Chinese City Wants to Launch Fake Moon to Illuminate Its Streets

Chinese City Wants to Launch Fake Moon to Illuminate Its Streets

If the effort is successful, it would likely mean the city would have the equivalent of a full moon every night rather than just at certain times of the month.

One moon apparently isn't enough for the Chinese city of Chengdu, according to a report in the People's Daily. The plans were reportedly revealed by the Chengdu Aerospace Science and Technology Microelectronics System Research Institute a Chinese innovation and entrepreneurship event that took place last week.

The artificial moon will be eight times brighter than the real Moon and will be able to light an area with a diameter of up to 80 kilometres.

Though skeptics have expressed doubt over whether the company will ever actually launch such a device, it does again raise questions over whether it is wise to fill the night sky with artificial lights.

The moon orbits the Earth about 380,000 km from the Earth, while the man-made moon is expected to be put on an orbit within 500 km from the Earth, the state-run China Daily reported.

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A French artist once envisioned a cosmic version of Versailles' famed Hall of Mirrors, reportedly proposing the creation of an artificial moon powered by a necklace of mirrors that would reflect light back onto the streets of Paris.

Asia Times reports that the satellite would have a "highly reflective coating to reflect light from the sun with solar panel-like wings whose angles can be adjusted".

The project has sparked concern from the public, as many began to worry that the lights reflected from space could affect the daily routines of certain animals.

He added that the testing of the illumination started years ago and is now ready.

Another Russian attempt to launch a space mirror in 1999 fizzled before it got off the ground, according to The Guardian.

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