EU space agency ends Mars coop w/Russia

European Space Agency terminates cooperation with Russia on Mars mission

European Space Agency is terminating cooperation with Russia on the mission to launch Europe’s first planetary rover, designed to search for signs of life on Mars, the agency’s chief said on Tuesday.

The ExoMars Rover, a collaboration between the ESA and the Russian space agency Roscosmos, had been on track to leave for Mars in September this year. But the ESA said in February that Russia’s invasion of Ukraine had made that “very unlikely.”

Then in March, the agency suspended cooperation with Roscosmos over their joint mission on Mars in the wake of the Ukraine invasion and sanctions imposed on Russia.