Russia's Luna-25 spacecraft crashes into the moon
Russia's Luna-25 space probe experienced an uncontrolled orbital deviation, leading to its collision with the moon, according to a statement from the Roscosmos space agency on Sunday.
The unmanned spacecraft had an ambitious goal of achieving the first-ever landing on the moon's southern pole. This region is of great interest to scientists due to the potential presence of valuable frozen water and essential elements. The anticipated landing date was set for Monday.
Regrettably, Roscosmos announced that communication with the Luna-25 was severed on Saturday following the craft's encounter with operational challenges and the reporting of an "anomalous situation."
Furthermore, a dedicated inter-departmental committee has been established to thoroughly investigate the factors contributing to the loss of the Luna-25 spacecraft.
In 1957, Moscow achieved the historic milestone of launching the world's first satellite into Earth's orbit. Subsequently, Soviet cosmonaut Yuri Gagarin etched his name in history by becoming the inaugural human to venture into space in 1961.
After the Luna-24 mission in 1976, Russia had refrained from lunar exploration attempts.
Presently, Russia has been engaged in a competitive race with India, whose spacecraft is poised to accomplish a landing at the moon's southern pole later this week.
The setback of Luna-25 signifies that Russia might not attain the distinction of being the initial entity to gather samples of the presumed frozen water located at the moon's southern pole.
The subsequent repercussions on Russia's lunar program are yet to be fully understood.
This incident occurs against the backdrop of Russia's $2 trillion economy grappling with its most substantial external adversity in decades—a confluence of Western sanctions and engagement in one of Europe's most significant land conflicts since World War Two.