The space powers have been in talks for months while Russia has been considering whether to participate in NASA’s Gateway Program, a competing lunar space station being built by an alliance from other countries in the next decade.
Roscosmos said in a statement: The International Lunar Research Station that Russia and China are working on is a group of experimental research facilities that have been established on the surface of the moon or in its orbit.
The statement said: The International Lunar Research Station is designed to support a variety of research experiments with the possibility of long-range unmanned operation with the possibility of a human presence on the surface of the moon.
Like NASA, China wanted international support for its plans to put infrastructure on the surface of the Moon. It has also sent several robotic missions to the moon, including the first landing on the far side of the moon and a rapid sample retrieval mission in December.
It represents the Lunar Space Station Agreement, actually signed between a president Chinese space (Zhang Kejian) Zhang Kejian and chief Russian space (Dmitry Rogozin), the latest development in Beijing’s efforts to explore the moon along with competitors, such as NASA, have been banned from working with China under a law passed by Congress. In 2011.
Russia, which has maintained a decades-long partnership with NASA on the International Space Station, has been reluctant to expand its space alliance with the United States to the moon.
NASA has stepped up efforts to return astronauts to the moon under the Trump administration through the Artemis program.
Part of that push involved leading a multilateral agreement called the Artemis Agreements, which is an effort to set standards for behavior in space.
Nine other countries have signed Artemis agreements so far, but Russia is not among them, after the United States sought to exclude Moscow from early talks on the accords last year.
NASA has signed agreements with the European Space Agency, Japan and Canada to work on the Lunar Gateway, the planned space station orbiting the moon.
NASA asked Russia to be part of building that station, but Moscow decided that NASA’s request to Russia to provide an airlock for the gate was impractical, a spokesman for the Russian space agency Roscosmos said in December.
The spokesman said: NASA has submitted a Russian-American memorandum of understanding to Roscosmos regarding cooperation in the portal project, The memorandum of understanding indicated that Roscosmos was committed to providing the crew airlock unit, and after studying the draft document, the participation of the Russian side of the size proposed by the US partners was considered impractical.
Russia soon focused its attention on China’s lunar ambitions, and the spokesman said: Cooperation with China became one of Russia’s top priorities last year.
The Russia-China agreement highlights the joint development of their International Lunar Research Station, which calls for planning, clarification, design, development, implementation and operation of scientific research station projects, including promoting the project to the international space community.
It is unclear what specific technical contributions are made by Russia, whose military and civilian space agency is investing in new launch infrastructure despite the local climate of budget retreat.
Russia’s space budget is ranked third in the world, after the United States and China.
The Chinese Center for Space Studies said: China also held talks with the French Space Agency as an examination of the status of bilateral space cooperation between the two agencies.