The new colonial movement: According to the state-run Russian news source TASS, Russia and China are in negotiations to increase Russia’s participation in China’s program to establish a manned base on the Moon.
Russia’s state-run space corporation Roscosmos is in talks with its Chinese colleagues to determine scientific tasks for a lunar base and to discuss technical aspects of the project’s implementation, Deputy Director General for International Cooperation at the Russian state space corporation Roscosmos Sergey Savelyev told TASS. “At present, work is under way to determine possible scientific tasks of mutual interest in the Moon research. Besides, possible technical implementation of the project is being analyzed,” he said.
The article is very vague about details. It does signal that Russia is strongly looking for alternatives to working with the U.S. on its Lunar Gateway project. If it teams up with China NASA will likely begin breaking off all cooperation with Russia because of the legal restrictions that prevent it from partnering in any way with China.
This article also illustrates Russia’s declining status as a space power. For years they have depending on the American program at ISS to have a place in space. Now they are looking to China. All in all, it appears they can’t get their own projects going, and need to attach themselves to others to have any part in the exploration of space.
As for China, that country wants to the good public relations that would come from making its space program international in scope. I expect therefore they want Russia to sign on. I also expect that China will dictate terms, as it doesn’t really need Russia in its effort.
From the press release: From the moment he is handed a possibility of making the first alien contact, Saunders Maxwell decides he will do it, even if doing so takes him through hell and back.
Unfortunately, that is exactly where that journey takes him.
The vision that Zimmerman paints of vibrant human colonies on the Moon, Mars, the asteroids, and beyond, indomitably fighting the harsh lifeless environment of space to build new societies, captures perfectly the emerging space race we see today.
He also captures in Pioneer the heart of the human spirit, willing to push forward no matter the odds, no matter the cost. It is that spirit that will make the exploration of the heavens possible, forever, into the never-ending future.
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