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Roscosmos chief highlights 50-year lunar mission break as major cause of Luna-25 crash

According to Yury Borisov, there can be no 100% success guarantee for lunar missions which give a huge impetus to the development of science and technology

MOSCOW, August 21. /TASS/. Russia’s half-a century break in lunar explorations is a major cause of the failed Luna-25 mission, Roscosmos Chief Yury Borisov said in a live broadcast on the Rossiya-24 television channel on Monday.

"The lunar program must not be interrupted in any case. This would be a wrong decision. I believe that the experience, the negative experience of interrupting the lunar program actually for 50 years is the key reason for the failures. Today we actually have to master all technologies anew and, of course, at a new technological level," the Roscosmos chief said.

There can be no 100% success guarantee for lunar missions: over the past four years, lunar rovers from India, the United Arab Emirates and Israel have failed in their attempt to land on the surface of the Earth’s natural satellite, Borisov said.

"In their time, it took the Soviet Union and the United States a decade to carry out their first soft landings," he added.

Russia was able even in more difficult situations to find a possibility for carrying out experiments of this kind as they are crucial for the country’s international prestige, its defense capability and technological sovereignty, the Roscosmos chief said.

"Each mission of this type gives a huge impetus to the development of science and technology. And this is the undoubtful value of these experiments," he stressed.

Today the Moon’s exploration has its practical value as the race for developing the Moon’s natural resources has already begun, Borisov said.

"In the future, the Moon will become a scene, an ideal scene for exploring deep space. That is why we should necessarily look for possibilities and continue explorations and the lunar program," the Roscosmos chief said.

Roscosmos reported earlier, citing preliminary data that the Luna-25 automatic station had ceased to exist after crashing into the Moon’s surface on August 19. Before that, the spacecraft was given an impulse to create its pre-landing elliptical orbit. At about 2:57 p.m. Moscow time on August 19, contact with the Luna-25 lunar probe was lost.

A Soyuz-2.1b carrier rocket with the Luna-25 automatic station blasted off from the Vostochny spaceport in the Russian Far East at 2:10 a.m. Moscow time on August 11. The lunar probe carried out two orbit adjustments on August 12 and 14. On August 16, the Luna-25 automatic station entered its lunar orbit. The spacecraft’s landing was planned for August 21.