According to Reuters news agency, the Soyuz 2.1v rocket carrying the lunar probe Luna-25 was launched from the Vostochny Cosmodrome, 5,550 km east of Moscow.
Soyuz 2.1v was launched at 2:11 a.m. local time on 11 August, i.e. 6:11 a.m. Vietnam time the same day. The Russian space agency said the lander will land on the moon on August 23.
The Russian Luna-25 rover is on a mission to find signs of water on the Moon. It is also an exciting race with India’s Chandrayaan-3 moon lander.
On 10 August, Russia completed final preparations for the launch of the Luna-25 probe to the Moon.
As per the plan, the Soyuz 2.1v rocket carrying Luna-25 was launched from the Vostochny Cosmodrome in the region, located 5,550 km east of Moscow.
This is Russia’s first Moon landing in 47 years, since the Soviet Union’s Luna-24 landing on the Moon in 1976.
Russia hopes to become the first power to land on the Moon’s south pole, where water ice is likely to be found.
For centuries, astronomers have wondered about the possibility of water on the Moon, which is 100 times drier than the Sahara. In 2018, a map by the US space agency (NASA) revealed that the eclipsed regions of the Moon contained water ice. In 2020, NASA confirmed that water is present in areas exposed to sunlight.
India has a special interest in Luna-25 as it is also competing with Russia to become the country with the first South Pole spacecraft on the Moon. A month ago, India launched the lunar lander Chandrayaan-3, and also planned to land on the moon on 23 August.
The Indians are looking at it as an interesting race knowing that Russia is capable of landing before that time as well.
theo spaceThe Chandrayaan-3 spacecraft was launched on 14 July and entered the lunar orbit on 6 August. Chandrayaan-3 will bring the lander and rover to the Moon’s south pole on August 23.
To date, only three countries have successfully sent spacecraft to the Moon: the United States, the Soviet Union, and China.