MOSCOW, December 17 (RIA Novosti) – Russia should consider farsighted space projects such as building a manned outpost on the moon, a senior Russian defense official said Tuesday.
“We must formulate practical plans from conceptual projects and fantasies,” said Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Rogozin, who oversees the defense and space industry.
Rogozin suggested the Russian space agency Roscosmos and the recently launched Future Research Fund (FPI) should work in tandem on developing such projects.
The FPI – patterned on the United States’ Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency – began distributing grants in April to fund farsighted defense projects. The fund will disburse $70 million this year.
“Many organizations are unfortunately stuck in their busy routines and they have no time to stop and think about new projects,” said Rogozin, who made a similar appeal in September last year for a Russian lunar base to reinvigorate the country’s space aspirations.
On Saturday the 140-kilogram Chinese lunar rover Jade Rabbit made the first soft landing of any probe on the moon in nearly four decades. China is the third nation to achieve a soft lunar landing after the US and the Soviet Union.