An artist’s conception shows SpaceIL’s Beresheet lunar lander on the moon. (SpaceIL Illustration)
Team SpaceIL’s Beresheet lunar failed to land on the surface of the moon on Thursday, preventing it from becoming the first Israeli spacecraft and the first privately funded probe to reach the surface of a celestial body beyond Earth.
Communication was lost as the SpaceIL team appeared to have trouble landing the spacecraft due to an apparent engine malfunction. It came at the end of a long, looping journey, a month and a half after the dishwasher-sized lander was sent into space by a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket with a pre-launch logistical assist from Seattle-based Spaceflight.
Beresheet, which takes its name from the Hebrew phrase for “In the Beginning,” was funded with nearly $100 million in private money, led by Israeli billionaire Morris Kahn’s $40 million contribution. Las Vegas casino magnate Sheldon Adelson provided another $24 million for the effort.
Don’t stop believing! We came close but unfortunately didn’t succeed with the landing process. More updates to follow.#SpaceIL #Beresheet pic.twitter.com/QnLAwEdKRv
— Israel To The Moon (@TeamSpaceIL) April 11, 2019
MISSION FAILED: Israel’s Beresheet spacecraft was unable to land on the moon, ending SpaceIL’s bid to be the ...