Israeli Spacecraft Crashes Upon Lunar Landing Attempt

Rodiano Bonacci
Aprile 15, 2019

On Saturday, founder Morris Khan took to Twitter to announce that the "dream goes on" with the launch of Beresheet 2.0. Israeli state-owned defense contractor Israel Aerospace Industries Ltd. (IAI). also took part in its development, which continued even after the competition ended with no timely victor.

"NASA has expressed regret over the failure of the Genesis mission to land on the moon, but we commended spaceIL for its privately funded mission to orbit the moon".

Before the big lunar landing attempt, the Beresheet spacecraft managed to snap fantastic pictures of the far side of the moon and it also slipped into lunar orbit on April 4, making Israel the seventh nation to successfully orbit the moon. "We're going to put it on the moon, and we're going to complete the mission". The mission cost about $100 million, most of it raised from private donors like Kahn and casino magnate Sheldon Adelson. Kahn said that Israeli government participation amounted to $3 million.

The robot craft Beresheet, built by non-profit SpaceIL and state-owned Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI), crashed on its final descent on Thursday, dashing Israel's hope of becoming the fourth country to manage a controlled lunar landing. Kahn also said the team is meeting this weekend to start planning the new Beresheet 2.0 project. So far, only three countries have successfully landed on the moon: the Soviet Union, US and China. The organisation aimed to win in the $20 million Google Lunar X Prize by becoming the first private robotic craft to set down on the moon, but unfortunately the deadline passed past year and it had to push on even without the monetary incentive.

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