Manned bases on Moon may be built after 2030 - Roscosmos
Roscosmos is considering the construction of manned lunar bases using water and materials available on the Moon, Roscosmos strategic planning and target programs department head Yuri Makarov said in an interview with Rossiya channel.
"The Moon is the most interesting object; we may take the next step and build a planetary station. There is everything the station needs to survive - rocket fuel and construction materials (if water is found)," Makarov said.
Asked when the project may be implemented, Makarov said, "It is always difficult to make a forecast but I think that may happen after 2030."
The Moon is of interest to researchers, particularly, because it is seismically stable. "Certain structures may be erected for scientific purposes," Makarov said.
The dark side of the Moon is immune from "the influence of the Earth" which means it may be used for experiments, too.
"Scientists say there may be interesting mining projects, i.e. [the Moon] has mineral resources," he said.
The federal space program includes two projects, Luna Globe and Luna Resurs, in which a rover will land on the Moon to take lunar soil samples and a lunar orbiter will be built.
It is possible to shift manned space research projects from low circumterrestrial orbits to the Moon, Makarov said.
He added that lunar expeditions would help prepare a manned flight to Mars.
"A flight to Mars presents lots of difficulties that have to be overcome, so we should test space technologies on a closer range, on the Moon," the Roscosmos representative said.