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A collaborative mission to send a rover to Mars by Europe and Russia has been postponed 2 years until late 2022, according to the European Space Agency (ESA) and the Russian space agency Roscosmos.

The mission that goes by the name Exomars, was planned to have been carried out in July or August this year, but because of the spread of the Coronavirus (COVID-19) has made it near impossible for the experts involved to make the necessary steps needed for executing the mission.

“The parties had to recognize that the final phase of ExoMars activities are compromised by the general aggravation of the epidemiological situation in European countries” – Roscosmos, said in a statement.

In addition to the virus’s influence, it is also pointed out that further testing of the rocket is needed and necessary.

The reason why the mission is delayed two years is because scientists believe that there is only one window of ten days every two years for optimal conditions to reach Mars as smoothly as possible.

“We have made a difficult but well-weighed decision to postpone the launch to 2022” said Dmitry Rogozin, head of Russia’s Roscosmos agency.

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