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Rocket carrier with telecommunications satellite launching at Russia's Baikonur cosmodrome (photo: dpa)

Russia plans Moon landing as it ramps up its space programme

Several key mission failures blemished Russia’s space exploration last year in spite of its launch rate surpassing that of the US and China. But a boost in its budget for the next seven years could help give the nation’s space programme a new lease of life.

RUSSIA has announced an ambitious space programme which could see the nation dominating modern space exploration - and salvage its reputation after a slew of failed space missions in 2012.

Roscosmos, the Russian Space Agency, has announced plans to launch an unmanned spacecraft to the moon in 2015. This will be Russia’s first unmanned lunar mission since the Soviet era.

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Dr. Emily Baldwin
Since the retirement of the US space shuttle in 2011, Nasa has been relying on Russia to ferry astronauts to and from the International Space Station at a cost of US$60 million per seat
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