Mystery ‘moon hut’ is actually an adorable rabbit-shaped rock

When China’s lunar rover first discovered it, the rock appeared cube-shaped.

The 'mysterious hut' appears as a cube-shaped protuberance above the horizon of the lunar surface.
(Image credit: CNSA/Our Space)


A mysterious “moon hut” spotted by China’s lunar Yutu 2 rover is actually … an adorable rabbit-shaped rock. 
The rock has been nicknamed “jade rabbit” by the Yutu 2 team, which announced its rover’s closer  inspection of the object on Friday (Jan. 7). The nickname is apt, as the rover’s name, Yutu, also translates to “jade rabbit.” 

The object first appeared in the field of view of Yutu 2’s cameras in December, when it looked like a cube-shaped blur on the horizon. The rover is the first to explore the moon‘s far side, which always faces away from Earth and is more rugged and pitted by craters than the moon’s near side. Because the object appeared irregularly symmetrical, with a strange flat top, researchers with the China National Space Administration outreach program Our Space joked that it might be the hut of alien pioneers, Live Science previously reported.
After a month-long traverse of the distance from the original spot where it snapped the “moon hut” image to the site of the object itself, the rover has now sent close-ups back to Earth. It turns out that the rock is much smaller than it appeared to be from afar. It’s also much rounder and cuter. In fact, it looks a lot like a crouched bunny munching on a couple of carrots (which are actually smaller rocks). Some observers, like CNET’s Amanda Kooser, even see bunny poop in a couple of round pebbles near the rock’s other end. 
“The Moon’s surface is 38 million square kilometres of rocks, so it would have been astronomically exceptional for it to be anything else,” space journalist Andrew Jones wrote on Twitter. “But while small, the jade rabbit/玉兔 rock will also be a monumental disappointment to some.”

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