Will Russia successfully launch a moon mission on or before 1 Sep 2023?
Closed Aug 20, 2023 05:25PM UTC
Russia announced plans to launch its Luna 25 lunar lander mission in Jul 2023, delayed from Sep 2022 (Space, TASS). Luna 25 would be the first mission of Russia's larger Luna Glob moon exploration program, intended to make progress towards a fully robotic lunar base. The lander is targeted to the south polar region of the moon (NASA). Russia has not successfully landed on the moon in over 45 years, with the most recent landing being the Luna 24 mission in 1976. Recent news of Luna 25's prospects has been mixed (The Space Review).
This question resolves based on reporting from reputable news outlets. A "successful launch" includes both launching and landing safely on the moon. If a launch occurs, we will wait to resolve the question until the mission makes a landing; scoring will be based on the launch date, not the moon landing date. For example, if a mission launches on 1 Sep 2023 and lands on the moon days later past the end date of this question, we will resolve as "Yes".
Minor damage to a spacecraft or other small problems that occur during its flight or landing would not necessarily prevent the question from being resolved as "Yes". A crash landing, or other event that results in catastrophic damage to the craft, would result in the question resolving as "No".
Russia's moon mission has failed, as the Luna-25 spacecraft crashed into the moon on 20 August 2023.
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