Russian President Vladimir Vladimirovich Putin has announced that Russia is planning to spend $50 billion for a new space program over the course of next seven years.
Soviet pilot and cosmonaut Yuri Alekseyevich Gagarin was the first human to go into outer space, when his Vostok spacecraft completed an orbit of the Earth on 12 April, 1961. Yesterday was the 52nd anniversary of that historic event. On April 12, Russian president Vladimir Putin attended a live link-up with the multinational crew of the International Space Station (ISS) from the new Vostochny cosmodrome (Eastern) and announced that Russia plans to invest $50 billion by 2020 to complete the country’s Vostochny cosmodrome, modernize Russia’s outdated rockets and other equipment, and eventually send cosmonauts to the Moon and even Mars.
Details about the program are still pretty vague but Russia hopes to have the first launch from Vostochny in 2015 and the first manned launch mission in 2018. “It’s going to be a great launchpad,” Putin said. “It took a long time to choose, but now work is fully underway.”
On the other side, Russian officials have mentioned that without elaborating anything they’re moving forward with their plans to create a permanent moon base.