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Europe Cancels Joint Moon Missions with Russia, Russia will move forward with lunar exploration without its European partners | Scientific American - Apr. 25, 2022 |

Europe's decision to cut ties with Russia on the Luna program follows on the heels of ESA suspending the ExoMars mission, a collaboration with Russia that had been scheduled for launch this September. ExoMars would have paired an ESA-built Mars rover with a Russian-supplied lander for a mission on the Red Planet. (That landing module is still in Europe. Dmitry Rogozin, general director of Russia's space program Roscosmos, recently asserted that it "must be returned.")

The upcoming Luna-25 mission will test soft-landing technology to gently touch down on the moon's surface. To that end, ESA was to provide Pilot-D, a navigation camera. The lander is also intended to gauge natural resources, including water, at the moon's south pole and investigate the effects of cosmic rays and electromagnetic radiation on the lunar surface. Luna-25 was originally targeted for takeoff last year, in October 2021, but its send-off has been repeatedly delayed. The current goal date is August 2022, according to Alexander Mitkin, deputy general designer of electrical systems at the Russian aerospace company that built and tested the probe, NPO Lavochkin. Further tests could put off its launch until later in the year, however.

"We will resume the lunar program," said Russian President Vladimir Putin during an April 12 visit to the country's Vostochny Cosmodrome. "We are ordered by the desire of our ancestors to move forward. Despite any difficulties and any attempts to prevent us in this movement from the outside, we will definitely consistently and persistently implement all the plans."

'Sapere aude'
by Oui (Oui) on Tue Aug 8th, 2023 at 11:48:28 AM EST

Airbus OneWeb Satellites

'Sapere aude'

by Oui (Oui) on Tue Aug 8th, 2023 at 11:58:48 AM EST
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