Start Europe Moon Landing by Israel’s Beresheet Spacecraft Appears to End in Crash

Moon Landing by Israel’s Beresheet Spacecraft Appears to End in Crash

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Free-Photos / Pixabay

The planned landing of an Israeli spacecraft on the moon has failed. „There was a defect in the spaceship,“ said Doron Ofer of Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI). The spacecraft had „definitely crashed on the surface of the moon“.

According to the Israeli non-profit organization SpaceIL, an important engine of the probe had failed during the landing maneuver. However, Israel is the seventh country in the world to have entered the Moon orbit, „said a SpaceIL representative.

For nearly a week, the space probe „Beresheet“ had circled around the moon and had mastered several important maneuvers. The landing in the area of ​​the „sea of ​​serenity“, a moon sea, then drove them from the optimal point. According to SpaceIL, the main engine of „Beresheet“ had failed during landing maneuvers. The communication with the probe was lost.

First privately financed moon mission

Israel had hoped to land on the moon as the fourth nation after the great powers Russia, USA and China. It was the first privately funded mission of its kind. „We are immensely proud today,“ said Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu at the Jahud Control Center near Tel Aviv shortly before the failed landing. „It is still an important step for humanity and a huge step for Israel.“ After the failed landing, he said he hopes for a new attempt within two to three years.

The Israeli billionaire Morris Kahn, the main sponsor, spoke of a „huge achievement“ despite the failed landing. „We have every reason to be proud.“

The spacecraft, weighing just under 600 kilograms and 1.50 meters in height, had begun its seven-week journey to the moon on February 22 at the Cape Canaveral Spaceport, Florida. Tesla boss Elon Musk launched a Falcon 9 rocket from Tesla chief spacecraft SpaceX to place an Israeli flag on the moon and study the magnetic field.

„Beresheet“ is the Hebrew name of the Book of Genesis in the Bible. On board the unmanned probe, about the size of a washing machine, was a time capsule containing hundreds of digital files. Among them is also a Hebrew Bible, which is stored on a carrier in coin size.