BEIJING - China's second moon orbiter Chang'e-2 on Thursday set off from its moon orbit for outer space about 1.5 million kilometers away from the earth, Chinese scientists said Thursday.
The orbiter left its moon orbit at 5:10 pm, according to the State Administration of Science,Technology and Industry for National Defence (SASTIND).
The orbiter had finished all its tasks within its designed life span of six months by April 1.
Scientists decided to let it carry out additional exploratory tasks as the orbiter still had fuel in reserve.
Traveling into outer space from the moon's orbit is the most important task among five other additional ones, according to the SASTIND.
Scientists hope the satellite can continue operations until the end of next year.