The Putin government cuts the budget again for the Russian space program because of weak oil prices.
Russian space agency Roscosmos has postponed the first manned moon mission from 2030 to 2035. The cut of the space budget from $27 billion to $19 billion is to blame for the delay of the Russian moon plans.
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These plans have anyway been rather vague. Roscosmos wanted to use a Angara rocket to bring a manned spacecraft to the moon as early as 2025 in first outlines of the mission. Then the program was postponed to 2030 and now its 2035.
The Angara rocket is right now developed by the Moscow-based Khrunichev State Research and Production Space Center. The rockets are aimed to transport between 3,8 to 24,5t into low Earth orbit. There is supposed to be a whole family of Angara rockets under development with different load capacities.
The new budget for the 2016-2025 Russian Space program was released today according to SputnikNews.
Roscosmos is still going ahead with the launch of the new Cosmodrome in Vostochny in April. Russia is right now the only country that is able to transport astronauts to the ISS. If the economic crises continous, there is a risk that Russia cuts the Soyuz program too. That is why it is of high importance that NASA gets back that capability.
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NASA has the Commercial Crew Program underway with contracts awarded to SpaceX and Boing to build manned spacecrafts. The first manned mission could launch as early as 2017.