It is intended for the future International Lunar Research Station
Scientists from Russia and China have created several concepts for an astrophysical telescope designed to operate on the moon. Information about the observatory was published in the latest issue of the "Bulletin of the Scientific and Production Association named after S.A. Lavochkin" (the enterprise is part of the "Roscosmos" State Corporation).
It is noted that the new astrophysical telescope is intended for the future International Lunar Research Station (ILRS). This was reported on the "Roscosmos" state corporation's website.
The concepts were prepared by staff from the Institute of Astronomy of the Russian Academy of Sciences, the National Observatory of China, the University of the Chinese Academy of Sciences and the Kavli Institute of Astronomy and Astrophysics at Peking University. Russian and Chinese researchers have proposed three options for a lunar observatory.
These include a compact UV telescope with a 15-30 centimetre aperture and its own guidance system, a multi-aperture telescope for taking simultaneous pictures of the sky in the UV range and a large multi-purpose telescope with a 60 centimetre aperture operating in the UV, optical and infrared ranges.
The telescope is expected to start operating in 2035. Its deployment is planned as part of the ILRS-5 mission.
We remind that ILRS is a set of experimental and research facilities built on the surface and/or in orbit of the Moon.
A scientific lunar station will enable multidisciplinary research, fundamental experiments and technology testing with the possibility of long-term unmanned operation, and with the prospect of human presence on the Moon.
The IRLS forming project is now open to all interested countries and international partners.
In addition, China and Russia will sign a new space cooperation programme for 2023-2027 this year.