Delphine Schiltz / Photo credit: AFP PHOTO / RUSSIAN SPACE AGENCY ROSCOSMOS / HANDOUT 06:39, August 11, 2023For the first time since 1976, Russia is launching a craft to the Moon on Friday. The launch of Luna-25 is the first mission of Russia's new lunar program, abandoned by ESA, the European Space Agency, since the beginning of the war in Ukraine. Beyond Russia's borders, initiatives are springing up from all sides.
With the launch of the Luna-25 mission, Russia sets out, for the first time since 1976, to conquer the Moon. And tries to return to what looks like a new race for moon landings. This launch is the first mission of Russia's new lunar program, abandoned by the European Space Agency (ESA) since the beginning of the war in Ukraine.
"Russia wants to show that it too can participate in this momentum towards the moon and that it still has the skills, technologies and know-how to land. And besides, they are almost aiming at the south pole, they will be at 70 ° south latitude, or the lunar south pole, it is a bit the new target of this renewal towards the Moon, "says Olivier Sanguy, of the city of space of Toulouse.
Moon landing planned for late August for India
This revival is primarily driven by China. The Asian giant has injected billions of dollars into its programs and plans to land before 2030. The Americans, for their part, are aiming for 2025 with the Artemis program. And newcomers are entering the race. Thanks to lower production costs and the support of private actors, India plans to land at the end of August, four years after a bitter failure.
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It must be said that the Moon is not easily delivered. In 2019, Israel suffered a similar failure, as did Japan last April.