Mars in 2009: Russia Space Agency... Jun 17, 2006 2:02:03 GMT -6 Quote Select PostDeselect PostLink to PostMemberGive GiftBack to Top Post by Chicago Astronomer Joe on Jun 17, 2006 2:02:03 GMT -6 Russian mission to Mars in 2009: officialRussia plans to send up a space exploration capsule to analyse the surface of Mars and collect test samples from one of the red planet's moons in 2009, Russia's space agency said."The launch of the 'Phobos-Grunt' space capsule is scheduled for October 2009. The expedition will take three years," Roskosmos said in a written statement.The first stage of the project "will be bringing back to Earth samples of soil from its natural satellite planet Phobos for detailed research in laboratory conditions," the statement said. The Phobos tests could "answer or come close to answering a wide spectrum of scientific questions on the physics of the solar system," it added. The European Space Agency (ESA) is planning a 700-million-euro (900-million-dollar) mission to Mars called ExoMars that is to launch in 2011. Nikolai Sevastyanov, the head of Russia's space construction company RKK Energia, said earlier that Russia could carry out a manned flight to Mars by 2030.===========I think a joint manned mission is long overdue to Mars.