Japan is now the fifth nation to land on the moon. Using new high-precision technologies, it has managed to place SLIM (Smart Lander for Investigating Moon) within 55 meters of its target. The target accuracy was 100 meters during project planning.

The precision was achieved by an image processing algorithm with high computational efficiency, whereby the lander compared the current lunar surface with the internally stored lunar maps, thus enabling constant monitoring. The focus was on achieving a balance between accuracy and data processing time.

SLIM will be used to research technologies for low-gravity exploration, which will be particularly important for a permanent presence on the moon.

The special feature of this explorer is that it is smaller and lighter: 2.4m x 2.7 x 1.7 m and weighs 210 kg with load. The lightness of the legs, for example, was achieved by a sponge-like structure that absorbs the impact on landing. Previous legs used mechanical shock absorbers, which resulted in a higher weight.

The videos can be seen here.

Even though the lander was misaligned during landing so that the solar panels could not capture enough solar energy, the other systems were successfully tested and can be reused for future landings on the moon.