The ESA Won’t Cooperate With Russia Anymore for the ExoMars Rover

The ESA Won’t Cooperate With Russia Anymore for the ExoMars Rover

Towards the end of the current decade, the European Space Agency’s rover known as Rosalind Franklin, which will aim to find alien life on Mars, will be launched. Roscosmos, the space agency of Russia, has also been involved in the rover’s development. The entire project is part of ExoMars.

A Russian rocket was supposed to launch the Rosalind Franklin into space. The launch site itself was even scheduled to be set in a place in Kazahstan that’s operated by Roscosmos. According to, Europe is halting its cooperation with Russia on the Rosalind Franklin rover. Perhaps we’ve all already guessed what the reason behind such a decision is.

Russia’s invasion of Ukraine led to the drastic decision

After Russia decided to invade Ukraine back in February, the European Space Agency (ESA) decided to suspend Russian help for the space mission, and it’s now becoming a termination due to the war in Ukraine and the sanctions that resulted. 

Josef Aschbacher, the Director General of the ESA, said in a tweet:

As a consequence, Council mandated me to officially terminate the currently suspended cooperation with Roscosmos on the ExoMars Rover and Surface Platform mission.

New insights on the way forward with other partners will come at a media briefing on 20 July, details to come.

ExoMars aims to explore the surface of the Red Planet while searching for signs of alien life. According to the ESA, the rover will represent the first mission to study our neighboring planet in depth but at the same time to move across its surface.

Otherwise, astronomers, including those from NASA, hope to send the first astronauts to Mars one day until the end of the current decade. But a lot more data is needed to understand how humans would behave in such a spaceflight.

Cristian Antonescu

Even since he was a child, Cristian was staring curiously at the stars, wondering about the Universe and our place in it. Today he's seeing his dream come true by writing about the latest news in astronomy. Cristian is also glad to be covering health and other science topics, having significant experience in writing about such fields.

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