And so it begins…the trip to Mars…the next great space race for the future of Mankind. Vladimir Putin has announced Russia will be undertaking a series of missions to finally reach the Red Planet, starting with an unmanned mission in 2019.
Russia is launching an ambitious series of missions to the Red Planet, starting with an unmanned Mars mission in 2019, President Vladimir Putin said in an interview.
“We are planning unmanned and later manned launches – into deep space, as part of a lunar program and for Mars exploration. The closest mission is very soon, we are planning to launch a mission to Mars in 2019,” the president said in an interview shown in a new documentary by Andrey Kondrashov.
He added that the lunar exploration program would target the polar regions of the moon.
Vladimir Putin, who is expected to be re-elected as president in the country’s election on Sunday, said that Russia would also launch a mission to the polar regions of the Moon, adding that its lunar program would differ to the one his country undertook in during the Soviet Union.
“Our specialists will try to make landings on the poles, because there is reason to believe that there can be water there. There, there is progress to be made, studies of other planets, distant space can be started from there.”
“Our specialists will try landing near the poles because there are reasons to expect water there. There is research to be done there, and from that, research of other planets and outer space can be undertaken,” Putin said.
America may have landed on the moon, but this came after Russia DID put the first human in space, and the first living thing, and the first satellite. It wouldn’t be a surprise if Russia takes the lead in this new space race, by putting the first man on Mars.
The race to the red planet is hotting up, with billionaire entrepreneur Elon Musk telling the South by Southwest Conference on Sunday that his SpaceX Mars rocket may be ready for test flights next year.
The Russian space program Roscosmos worked with the European Space Agency in the Schiaparelli EDM lander mission, in which a Russian rocket was used.
Maybe if the Americans eventually arrive, they’ll be in for a little surprise…