Russia and US to build moon's first space station
Russia and the United States have agreed to cooperate on a Nasa-led programme to build the first lunar space station, part of a long-term project to send humans to Mars.
Russia's space agency Roscosmos said that a cooperation agreement had been signed at an astronautical congress in Adelaide.
“The partners intend to develop international technical standards which will be used later, in particular to create a space station in lunar orbit,” the Russian agency said in a statement.
The Russians and Americans would cooperate to build the systems needed to organise scientific missions in lunar orbit and to the surface of the moon, the agency added.
“Roscosmos and Nasa have already agreed on standards for a docking unit of the future station. Taking into account the country’s extensive experience in developing docking units, the station’s future elements will be created using Russian designs.”
Roscosmos’s general director, Igor Komarov, said no fewer than five countries were building their own rockets and systems.
“To avoid future problems over technical cooperation, part of the standards should be unified – for a possibility for various countries to work on their craft and dock to the international lunar station,” the Guardian cited Komarov as saying.
Russia and the United States also discussed using Moscow’s Proton-M and Angara rockets to help create the infrastructure of the lunar spaceport, the statement said, adding that the main works were scheduled to begin in the mid-2020s.