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Russia's $2.8B moon landing plans revealed

Posted on Tuesday, 5 August, 2014 | Comment icon 18 comments

Russia is heading to the moon. Image Credit: NASA/Dennis M. Davidson
Russia is planning an extensive series of missions with the ultimate goal of landing humans on the moon.
Landing a cosmonaut on the lunar surface has been a dream of Russian scientists since the 1960s during which the world's best known space race ended with Apollo 11's historic landing in 1969.

Now Russia is set to try again and this time to be the first to set a human on the moon since the original Apollo program. The first phase will involve the sending of several unmanned probes over the next few years beginning with Luna-25 in 2016 which will land at the moon's south pole.

Two more missions, expected to launch in 2018 and 2019, will then see an orbiter and a second lander arriving at the moon in an effort to hunt for water ice.

Speaking at the COSPAR Scientific Assembly in Moscow on Sunday, Igor Mitrofanov of the Russian Academy of Sciences' Space Research Institute revealed that these missions are an important step as they will provide the opportunity to "learn to conduct the Moon landing all over again."

"An estimated cost of one project aimed at the development of an automatic lunar station is 10 billion rubles (about $280 million)," he said. "The project is to be completed in five or six years. The manned lunar mission will cost ten times more."

Source: Ria Novosti | Comments (18)

Tags: Russia, Moon

Recent comments on this story
Comment icon #9 Posted by Noteverythingisaconspiracy on 5 August, 2014, 16:47
A 2,8 billion $ budget does seem awfully small for a manned lunar mission. While the Soyuz can obviously be used for a manned lunar mission (that was what it was originally designed for) they don't have a heavy rocket or a lunar lander. Developing those will take a lot of money and time. I am not saying that they can't do it (I think they can), but the budget does look unrealistic to me. The unmanned probes looks very interesting though. Especially drilling for water at the lunar south pole.
Comment icon #10 Posted by seeder on 5 August, 2014, 16:49
Comment icon #11 Posted by skookum on 5 August, 2014, 18:11
So they have found a way past the Van Allen belt which they supported as proof the NASA moon landings were faked?
Comment icon #12 Posted by StRoostifer on 5 August, 2014, 18:12
This is very cool. I wish them well and hope they succeed. Small problem. Someone has beaten them to it. Sorry, I'm on a giggle tablet that doesn't let me post vids.
Comment icon #13 Posted by Noteverythingisaconspiracy on 5 August, 2014, 19:08
When did the Russians ever say that the moonlandings were faked ? Hint: they didn't !
Comment icon #14 Posted by SaraT on 6 August, 2014, 11:34
Remember this is Russia we're talking about. They might be able to get the humans there, but not necessarily get them back.
Comment icon #15 Posted by Waspie_Dwarf on 6 August, 2014, 11:59
Well there's two sentences that convey a huge amount of prejudice but zero knowledge. Remember this is Russia we are talking about, a nation which has not lost a cosmonaut in a spaceflight accident since 1971. The USA has lost 14 astronauts since 1986.
Comment icon #16 Posted by Silver Surfer on 6 August, 2014, 12:05
yes america landed on the moon. Then after landing they boosted off and made it back to earth.. in 1969. NO REALLY.
Comment icon #17 Posted by keithisco on 6 August, 2014, 18:56
That is precisely what I was posting in relation to...
Comment icon #18 Posted by Waspie_Dwarf on 14 August, 2014, 14:17
How exactly? When I was at school 10 x 280 million was 2.8 billion, which is the figure you are disputing. Mitrofanov's figure is on agreement with the original estimate NOT with you.

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