- Russia scoffs at NASA plans to send astronauts to asteroid, Mars by 2015
- Team shows unity during first month of Mars flight simulation
- Indian scientist says Phobos will turn into a ring around Mars
- Russia, China sign deal to jointly explore Mars, Phobos
Russian scientists are due to carry out tests of an unmanned lander that will be used in a 2011 mission to Phobos, one of the moons of Mars.
The Phobos-Grunt spacecraft will be sent to the surface of Phobos and will then fly back to Earth with soil samples.
"The aim of the test is to narrow down the lander's projected impact location on the surface of the Earth," a statement by the Central Aerodynamic Institute said.
"As far as the lander...does not include any signaling equipment...narrowing down its projected impact area will make the search for it easier," the statement added.
The project was conceived in 1999 and envisioned a multi-purpose mission to Mars. The authors of the project said the biggest ground-based radio telescopes cannot provide the necessary precision and proposed the Phobos-Grunt spacecraft, designed by the Lavochkin Russian scientific association (NPO) as a platform for the mission.
In June 2006, NPO Lavochkin announced it has started manufacturing and testing the development version of the spacecraft's onboard equipment.
The mission is expected to begin in November 2011 and last some 330 days.
MOSCOW, September 9 (RIA Novosti)
Add to blog
You may place this material on your blog by copying the link.
Image Galleries: Hungry Hippos, Tiny Tamarins and Other Animal News
Infographics: First Russian Smartphone
Russia has surged ahead on the foreign policy stage, but this is not enough to remain a great power. The tough-minded policies and masterful diplomacy of Russia’s leadership have maximized the country’s position in the world, and are now the main source of its international influence and prestige. Russia’s foreign policy in the next decade depends entirely on what happens at home.