China's Jade Rabbit moon rover has survived extremely cold temperatures but is still malfunctioning, Chinese state media said on Thursday. Last month technical problems had cast uncertainty over the country's first moon landing.
Officials say the Yutu, as it's called in Chinese, is awake, but hasn't completely recovered.
"Hi, is anyone there?" the rover posted Thursday on its Weibo account, which is presumably maintained on Earth by a human.
The Jade Rabbit was designed to roam the lunar surface for three months, surveying for natural resources and sending back data. But it ran into problems as it was shutting down in preparation for the lunar night, a two-week period that exposes the moon’s surface to extreme cold.
The problems were a rare setback for China's burgeoning space program, which in recent years has conducted spacewalks and placed a space station in orbit.
Jade Rabbit, named after a lunar goddess in traditional Chinese mythology, landed to domestic fanfare in mid-December.
The moon buggy began experiencing "mechanical control abnormalities" late in January, when entering its second lunar night.
After the rover’s awakening this week, Pei Zhaoyu, a spokesman for the lunar probe program, said it was still not functioning properly.
"It's awake. We have a signal. But the problem still hasn't been resolved," Pei said, but gave no further details.
Experts are still working to fix the rover, the state-controlled Xinhua news agency said.
The Jade Rabbit, and the Chang'e 3 probe that delivered it, marked the first "soft landing" on the moon since 1976, before which both the United States and the Soviet Union accomplished the feat.
Al Jazeera and wire services