The optical observatory on the Moon can be built in ten or twenty years, the director of the Institute of Applied Astronomy of the Russian Academy of Sciences Andrei Finkelstein.
"To this idea I'm extremely positive. And plans available — it's not a fantasy. 100% sure that the optical observatory on the Moon will be no later than the period of 20-30 years ", — said the scientist" Interfax ".
Finkelstein believes that the fight to create the first lunar observatory will be between the U.S. and China, which are increasingly mastering space. "I hope that Russia also join in this process of competition," — he said.
According to him, the huge advantage of the Moon for the creation of such facilities is the absence of the atmosphere, because of which the world is impossible to carry out high-precision observations. "There's no atmosphere, so the conditions for observing the magnificent. Observatory can be used to search for extrasolar planets, extraterrestrial life, "- said Finkelstein.
The scientist also noted that over the years has grown its belief that humanity is not alone in the universe. "As has already discovered more than 600 extrasolar planets, of which two dozen are similar to Earth, there is the idea that the existence of life — a common phenomenon. And what's more, this life is likely very similar to ours, "- he said.
As written "Actual comments" in the Khrunichev Space Center have developed a lunar exploration program that covers the period from 2025 to 2037.
Lunar program is proposed to implement the 12 years from 2025 — from the creation of the space station in lunar orbit, the crew of four to build a permanent base on the moon's surface.
In the years 2028-2029 on the Moon plan to deploy a visited the base of the first stage of a two-week manned missions, and in the years 2035-2036 — to create a lunar base, the second phase, which will start using lunar resources and provide training to the industrial use of Earth's natural satellite.