|Mission type||Single launch: orbiter, lander, ascent vehicle, sample-return|
|Operator||Russian Federal Space Agency|
|Bus||Pereletny Modul or Flagman |
Russian Space Research Institute
|Launch mass||5,200 kg|
|Landing mass||1,700 kg, includes Service Module (500 kg), Mars Ascent Vehicle (700 kg), Return Capsule (40 kg)|
|Dry mass||Orbiter: 50 kg (110 lb)|
|Start of mission|
|Launch date||2024 (proposed)|
|Peri altitude||500 km (310 mi)|
|Apo altitude||500 km (310 mi)|
|Sample mass||≈0.2 kg (0.44 lb)|
Mars-Grunt, also known as Expedition-M (Russian: Марс-Грунт), is a robotic spacecraft sample return mission proposed to be sent to Mars in mid-2020s. It was proposed to the Russian Federal Space Agency (Roscosmos) by the Russian Space Research Institute.
If funded by the Russian space agency Roscosmos, it would be developed by the Russian Space Research Institute and NPO Lavochkin, based on Fobos-Grunt technology. Designs show a dome-shaped lander would separate from the orbiter and would enter the Martian atmosphere protected within an inflatable rubber braking cone and fire retrorockets for a soft landing. Once a robotic arm selects and retrieves the samples (mass about 0.2 kilograms (0.44 lb)), a small rocket in the top of the lander would blast the ascent vehicle for rendezvous and docking with the orbiter for the soil sample transfer into the return vehicle.
The cruise stage PM (from Pereletny Modul Russian: Перелётный Модуль) is sometimes referred to as Flagman. It was developed for the Fobos-Grunt mission, but its basic architecture is promised to be the base for a whole generation of future planetary missions, including Luna-Glob, Luna-Resurs and Luna-Grunt to the Moon; Venera-D to Venus; Mars-NET and Mars-Grunt to Mars and, possibly, Sokol-Laplas to Jupiter. The platform's developer - NPO Lavochkin - stressed that in different configuration, the same bus could be adapted as an orbiter or as a lander.