Russia and China have begun to draw up ambitious plans for missions that would directly compete with those of the United States and its partners.
They have teamed up for a robotic mission to an asteroid in 2024.
They are coordinating a series of lunar missions intended to build a permanent research base on the south pole of the moon by 2030.
The first of those missions, a Russian spacecraft with the revived Soviet-era name Luna, is scheduled to launch as soon as October, aiming to locate ice that could provide water to future human visits to the moon.
It will be the first of a new era of space competition that could be as intense as the first in the first two decades of the space race that followed the Soviet Union and the U.S.”