Public lecture on ‘The Future Space Exploration Missions of Russia’






Prof. Lev Zelenyi

Vice president of the Russian Academy of Sciences (Academician)

Director of Space Research Institute of the Russian Academy of Sciences



26 May 2017 (Friday)



M1603, 16/F, Core M, The Hong Kong Polytechnic University



3:00pm - 5:00pm (light refreshment from 3:00pm)


About the speaker

Academician Lev Zelenyi is a physicist, professor and expert in plasma physics and plasma theory. Since 2013 Lev Zelenyi has been vice president of Russian Academy of Sciences and heads the Bureau of RAS's Council for Space. 2000s witnessed many launches, where IKI's scientists were involved in international collaboration, including the Mars Odyssey and Mars Exploration Rovers (NASA), Mars Express and Venus Express (ESA), and INTEGRAL (ESA), to name just a few. The major project of the decade was Phobos Sample Return, that was launched in 2011, but unfortunately did not leave the near-Earth orbit and perished in the Atlantic ocean. This tragedy led to substantial reconsideration of the Russian space program. Nonetheless, IKI's current agenda includes many working missions and projects to be launched in the coming years.



Currently Russia together with the European Space Agency, is working on the EXOMARS program which is devoted to the search for extinct (or even present) primitive life on Mars. This activity was motivated both by earlier findings of a significant amount of subsurface water in certain Martian regions and the recent discovery of the methane eruptions to the Martian atmosphere. The Russian Lunar program includes several landers (LUNA-25, LUNA-27 and LUNA-28) to explore the south polar regions of the Moon with their permafrost deposits, and one orbiter (LUNA-26) to investigate space plasma in the Lunar vicinity. The main scientific tasks of the Lunar program will be the study of mineralogical, chemical, elemental and isotopic content of the regolith and search for volatiles in the regolith of the polar areas; investigation plasma, neutral and dust exosphere and interaction of the space environment with Lunar surface at the poles.  The inner structure of the Moon will be also studied by seismic, radio and laser ranging methods.


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