Deep Space Gateway [wikipedia.org] (DSG) is a planned space station in lunar orbit. The U.S. and Russia signed an agreement last year [soylentnews.org] to work on the station's development. Now Russia has created an engineering department inside the RKK Energia [wikipedia.org] space corporation in order to plan the nation's lunar exploration, including a possible manned landing:
Officially, Moscow has been on a path to put a human on the Moon since 2013, when President Putin approved a general direction for human space flight in the coming decade. The program had been stalling for several years due to falling prices for oil, the main source of revenue for the Russian budget. Last year, however, the Russian lunar exploration effort was given a new impetus when the Kremlin made a strategic decision to cooperate with NASA on the construction of a habitable outpost in the orbit around the Moon, known as Deep Space Gateway, DSG.
Although the US saw the primary goal of the DSG as a springboard for missions to Mars, NASA's international partners, including Russia, have been pushing the idea of exploring the Moon first. On the Russian side, RKK Energia led key engineering studies into the design of the DSG and participated in negotiations with NASA on sharing responsibilities for the project.
To coordinate various technical aspects of lunar exploration, the head of RKK Energia Vladimir Solntsev signed an order late last year to form Center No. 23Ts, which would report directly to him. According to a document seen by Ars Technica, the group will be responsible for developing long-term plans for human missions to the vicinity of the Moon and to its surface, as well as for implementing proposals for international cooperation in lunar missions. This is a clear signal that NASA might soon have a new liaison in Russia for all things related to the DSG. The same group will also take care of all the relevant domestic interactions between RKK Energia and its subcontractors.
Unlike the ISS [wikipedia.org], the DSG should not require any orbital boost burns and could reach any altitude above the Moon using ion thrusters.
Here are two op-eds from last year about the Deep Space Gateway:
John Thornton: The Deep Space Gateway as a cislunar port [spacenews.com]
Previously: NASA Eyeing Mini Space Station in Lunar Orbit as Stepping Stone to Mars [soylentnews.org]
Lockheed Martin Repurposing Shuttle Cargo Module to Use for Lunar Orbiting Base [soylentnews.org]
Bigelow and ULA to Put Inflatable Module in Orbit Around the Moon by 2022 [soylentnews.org]
President Trump Signs Space Policy Directive 1 [soylentnews.org]
Related: Space Habitats Beyond LEO: A Short Step Towards the Stars [soylentnews.org]
Should We Skip Mars for Now and Go to the Moon Again? [soylentnews.org]
Japan Planning to Put a Man on the Moon Around 2030 [soylentnews.org]
Space Race: 6 Manned Moon Missions With the Best Chances of Success [soylentnews.org]
ESA Expert Envisions "Moon Village" by 2030-2050 [soylentnews.org]
Bigelow Expandable Activity Module to Continue Stay at the International Space Station [soylentnews.org]
Enter the Moon Cave [soylentnews.org]
India and Japan to Collaborate on Lunar Lander and Sample Return Mission [soylentnews.org]