16 May 2024 10:46

Russia, China to begin joint exploration of Moon after 2036 - Roscosmos head

BEIJING. May 16 (Interfax) - A Russian-Chinese expansion on the Moon will begin after 2036, Roscosmos head Yury Borisov said in a statement.

"Let us first develop and test it on Earth. [...] Let me tell you this: we are planning an expansion on the Moon sometime after 2036," Borisov said in response to a question about when a nuclear power plant that is being developed together with China for lunar projects might be tested.

Russia and China presented a roadmap for building a joint lunar base in June 2021. They signed an intergovernmental memorandum of mutual understanding in the joint construction of an international lunar research station in March 2021. Borisov said in April 2023 that the Zevs (Zeus) nuclear-powered space tug might be used in the Russian-Chinese lunar program, and in October that year reported Russia's plans to explore the Moon together with China after launching the Luna 26 and Luna 27 spacecraft.

In early March 2024, Borisov said that Russia and China planned to deploy a nuclear power plant on the Moon in approximately 2023-2035.

On March 14, Russian President Vladimir Putin said that the development of a nuclear power plant in space required funding and should become a priority.