Russia’s federal space agency Roscosmos has announced to build Moon colony by the year 2040. This was decided after discussions on the country's long-term space program. “The lunar program will be implemented in several stages by 2040,” Roscosmos announced after a joint session with the Russian Academy of Sciences’ space council.
“The interest of mankind to the moon is associated primarily with the fact that unique regions with favourable conditions for the construction of lunar bases were discovered on the satellite. The implementation of the lunar program will be held in several stages until 2040,” Roscosmos said in a statement.
Russia will reportedly implement its new strategy in three phases, to include the launch of an orbital station, a manned mission to the surface, and the eventual construction of a permanent base.
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A previous program drafted by Roscosmos in 2014 planned a three-stage plan to send humans to the lunar surface to set up the infrastructure for a colony. Hundreds of aspiring cosmonauts had submitted applications willing to become the first Russians to land on the moon.
NASA, on the other hand, seems to treat the idea of a lunar colony as a stepping stone to Mars. “Right now, we’re building a space station, we call it ‘Gateway,’ that’s going to be in orbit around the moon — think of it as a reusable command module where we can have a human presence in orbit around the moon. From there we want reusable landers that go back and forth to the surface of the moon. We think we can achieve this in about 10 years, the idea being proved the capability, retire the risk, prove the human physiology and then go on to Mars,” The Hill quoted NASA’s administrator Jim Bridenstine as saying.