China-Russia Mars mission set for takeoff.


February 16th, 2009 in Breaking News

China-Russia Mars mission set for takeoff

China-Russia Mars mission set for takeoff.

The first joint Chinese-Russian mission to Mars is set to take off in October and reach the red planet in August 2010, an exploration project designer said.

A Russian Zenit rocket will launch a Chinese Yinghuo-1 satellite and a Russian Phobos-Grunt unmanned lander, Chen Changya, chief designer of the China-Russia Mars exploration project, told Hong Kong’s Wen Wei Po newspaper.

Phobos-Grunt is expected to study Mars from orbit, including its atmosphere and dust storms, plasma and radiation, before landing on Phobos, one of Mars’ two small moons.

Yinghuo-1, which means Firefly-1, will explore the Martian environment and carry out research into how surface water on the planet disappeared, Chen said.