In the '60s, the Apollo missions made the moon the object of earthling fascination, but lately it's been eclipsed in the news by Mars, a singing astronaut and other oddities of the solar system. Well, the moon is still pretty cool, a fact we were reminded of this week thanks to the Chinese Chang'e 3 lunar lander, the first probe to land on the moon since 1976.
Yes, you read that right. Although NASA's Apollo program successfully landed six spacecrafts and 12 men on the moon, the last craft to touch down there was Russia's Luna 24 on August 18, 1976.
This week, the China National Space Administration released a series of full colour pictures taken by the Chang'e 3 lander, which arrived on the moon in December. The photos were then compiled and reworked into a stunning 360-degree panorama by the Estonian photographer Andrew Bodrov.
While Brodov isn't the only one stitching together the timelapsed images, his version is especially exciting because it's interactive — viewers can move the camera in a full circle to see a complete picture of the lunar surface around the lander — sort of like Google Street View: Lunar Edition. Check out the panorama above to explore the moon for yourself.