Russia’s invasion in Ukraine made it very unlikely Europe’s first Mars-rover would launch.

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According to new reports, Europe’s first landing on Mars of a moving probe later this year is “very likely” to be delayed due to the conflict in Ukraine.

The ExoMars Rover launch on June to the Red Planet was planned jointly by the European Space Agency, Roscosmos and Russia’s space agency Roscosmos. However, it is now in danger due to Vladimir Putin’s invasion.

This is the latest blow to the launch that was delayed in July 2020 by the coronavirus pandemic.

It is now understood that Russia’s strict sanctions and international backlash have made it difficult for the agencies to work together.



A previous launch date in 2020 had to be rescheduled due to the Covid pandemic
Due to the Covid pandemic, a previous launch date of 2020 had to be rescheduled

Space missions to Mars must be launched according to strict schedules to avoid going off target. Any delays could cause major issues.

The ESA released the following statement: “We are fully implementing sanctions imposed on Russia by our Member States.

“We are currently assessing the impact of each of our ongoing programmes, which were conducted in cooperation and partnership with Roscosmos Russian state space agency Roscosmos. Our decisions will be aligned to those of our Member States. In close collaboration with international and industrial partners (in particular NASA on the International Space Station),



Russia's invasion of Ukraine means their joint launch to Mars European Space Agency will now likely be scrapped
The launch had been planned by Roscosmos and the European Space Agency.

Elon Musk, tech mogul, pledged his SpaceX firm to save the International Space Station following Russia’s threat to withdraw it from countries that impose economic sanctions against Ukraine.

Russia’s space chief Dimitry Rodozin threatened to kill Americans with chilling threats on social media last Friday night. This was in response the US President Joe Biden’s list of sanctions. “degrade Russia’s aerospace industry”.

Roscomos’ chief Roscomos officer Rogozin was asked by Rogozin if the US wanted it. “destroy our cooperation on the ISS”.

He also warned: “If you block cooperation with us, who will save the ISS from an uncontrolled deorbit and fall into the United States and Europe?”

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