Russian space researchers to focus on Moon, Mars in coming decade - scientist

The Moon and Mars will be key aspects in Russia's interplanetary research in the coming decade alongside a repetition of the Phobos-Ground mission, Lev Zelyony, director of the Russian Academy of Sciences' Institute of Space Research, said at a conference organized by the Committee on Space Research (COSPAR).

The Moon and Mars will be key aspects in Russia's interplanetary research in the coming decade alongside a repetition of the Phobos-Ground mission, Lev Zelyony, director of the Russian Academy of Sciences' Institute of Space Research, said at a conference organized by the Committee on Space Research (COSPAR).

"The Moon and Mars are our priorities for 2016-25," he said.

A presentation organized at the conference indicates that the federal space agency Roscosmos jointly with the European Space Agency plans to implement two stages in the ExoMars mission in 2016 and 2018.

In 2016, Roscosmos will join the BepiColombo project alongside Europe and Japan.

A telescope, Spektr-RG, is to be put into orbit in 2017.

The year 2019 will see the first launch in many years of the Russian lunar orbiter, Luna-Glob.

A tentatively approved plan sets the launch of a space observatory, Sector UF, that will work in a UV band, for 2020.

The launches of an orbiter and descent vehicle under the Luna-Resurs project has been scheduled for 2021 and 2023. After lunar and Martian know-how has been tested and fine-tuned, tentatively by 2024, the experiment to launch the Phobos-Ground satellite to Mars's moon Phobos could be repeated. The purpose of the mission is to bring soil samples to Earth, Zelyony said.

Read more: Russia to continue experiments to simulate human flight to Mars

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