The race for the moon – podcast | News

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Robin McKie is the science editor of the Observer. Above the past 42 years, he’s coated everything from advances in genetics and new discoveries in physics to the urgent scientific concerns elevated by the Covid pandemic. But just one subject matter excites him additional than any other: area – and, additional particularly, the moon.

He tells Michael Safi how the initial crewed mission to the moon in 1969 captured the imagination of his technology and why the modern day-working day missions are one thing to be newly thrilled by.

In 1969, it appeared apparent that standard lunar missions would be not only attainable but most likely. Nonetheless no individual has stepped on the surface of the moon due to the fact 1972.

This month there was hope that the Vulcan Centaur rocket launched from Cape Canaveral in the US would launch the Peregrine spacecraft safely and securely on to the lunar surface area. But a fuel leak means there is now no chance of that.

Today, if all goes to plan, Japan will land an uncrewed craft on the floor of the moon. But regardless of decades of scientific improvements since the early Apollo missions, McKie explains why landing on the moon appears to be as tricky as ever.

The Vulcan Centaur rocket carrying the Peregrine lunar lander lifts off from Cape Canaveral. Photograph: ULA/PA Wire

Photograph: ULA/PA

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