MOSCOW (Sputnik) – Russian State Space Corporation Roscosmos said in a statement on Thursday that the launch of the joint Russian-European ExoMars-2020 astrobiology mission, aimed at searching for evidence of life on Mars, had been postponed after the recent failure of tests of the parachutes needed for the landing.
“The launch of the ExoMars-2020 mission is planned to take place during the ‘astronomic window’ from July 26-August 13, 2020, with landing on Mars scheduled for March 2021,” Roscosmos said.
Meanwhile, Roscosmos chief Dmitry Rogozin has previously said that the joint mission of Roscosmos and the European Space Agency (ESA) will be launched on July 25, 2020.
A source told Sputnik last week that tests of the parachutes, developed in Europe, failed on August 5 in Sweden. The ESA confirmed the information, specifying that the parachute canopies had been damaged. New tests are expected to be held before 2019 end and also in 2020.