The primary and alternative places of landing of the Luna-25 lunar station have been selected, the official website of the Press Service of the Space Research Institute of the Russian Academy of Sciences reported on January 24.
The landing locations were presented by the Head of Nuclear Planetology Department of the Space Research Institute of the Russian Academy of Sciences Dr. Sci. in Physics and Mathematics Igor Mitrofanov at the meeting of the Council of the Russian Academy on Space issues. According to him, the main parameters for choosing the exact location were the engineering requirements. For example, ground slope should not exceed 7 percent, and relative time of sun exposure should be over 40 percent of a lunar day.
In addition, the ground at the place of landing must be quite rich with hydrogen to be able to perform a study of frozen water in the ground, which is one of the mission’s objectives.
Therefore, in the course of a careful selection only two most favorable landing areas near the south pole of the Moon were chosen out of the twelve proposed ones. The Boguslawsky lunar crater included into computer modeling program for landing was not selected as a possible place for landing.
The launch of Luna-25 device is scheduled for 2019. Flight and landing program is calculated according to the last Soviet lunar missions projects, meaning that the device will move along the low polar orbit around the Moon, then it will slow down and perform vertical landing at the planned landing point. For the first time in the history of space exploration Luna-25 station will operate near the south pole of the Moon.
The purpose of the mission is to study the Moon’s polar soil and its chemical composition. In particular, the presence of frozen water in it, as well as to study the exosphere of the Earth’s natural satellite.
Luna-25 station is the first lunar project in Russia since 1976, which marks the first stage of the new lunar program scheduled in the Federal Space Program for 2016 – 2025.
The Russian lunar program includes five automatic stations to be launched to the Moon until 2025. Luna-26 orbital station is scheduled to be launched in 2021 and will arrange communication for subsequent lunar missions. Two launches under the Luna-27 program are planned for 2022, designed to perfect the technology of creation of a permanent operating base on the Moon. The last in the series of these missions, Luna-28, called Luna Ground, is supposed deliver back to the Earth the samples of the lunar ground extracted by the previous stations.
Source: Rossa Primavera News Agency