Sunday, August 3, 2014

Possible Delays for Lunar and Martian Missions

Anatoly Zak, author for the well-respected site, reports on delays for Russia's lunar and Martian missions.

He reports that a three year slip in Russia's lunar missions has been officially announced.  These missions will deliver spacecraft to orbit and land on our moon.  (See this page for a list of the currently planned missions (without launch dates) as well as my earlier post on Russian lunar and planetary plans.)

Zak also reports that the joint European and Russian 2018 ExoMars rover and surface station is facing a likely two year delay to 2020.  A series of delays caused by coordinating the efforts of the two agencies to develop the missions is the apparent cause.  Separately, Europe's portion of the mission's cost reportedly will exceed the currently approved funding limits.  If this occurs, the European Space Agency will need to find and approve additional funds to complete the mission.

The joint 2016 Mars orbiter mission appears to be proceeding well and is expected to launch on time.

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