Russia is a proud space nation. Now she wanted to show that despite the war against Ukraine and sanctions imposed by the West, she was still capable of top scientific achievements. After the successful launch of the investigation on 11 August, Russian politicians insisted that the country would not give up.
On Saturday, Roscosmos reported an initially unexpected incident. In preparation for touchdown soon, the probe was scheduled to enter a new orbit around Earth’s satellite at 2:10 p.m. Moscow time (1:10 a.m. CEST) on Saturday. It said, “During the operation, an undetermined condition occurred at the automatic station, which did not allow the maneuver to be carried out under the given parameters.”
“Luna-25” was part of the Russian lunar program, which envisages establishing its own space station on the celestial body by 2040. The probe was launched more than a week ago and entered orbit last Wednesday worlds One. Since then, according to Russian information, the 1,800 kg missile has been looking for a suitable landing site. On Thursday, Roscosmos presented a photo of the Moon’s surface taken by the probe.
It was the first Moon mission since the Soviet space probe “Luna-24” in 1976. Actually, “Luna” should have hit the road a long time ago. The first planned launch date for the lunar probe was 2012. Last year, another launch was planned for May, which was again delayed due to technical problems. Roscosmos originally worked with the European Space Agency ESA on the Moon programme. However, after Russia’s invasion of Ukraine in February 2022, ESA ended cooperation with Moscow.