Inside The SpaceX Moon Launch That Just Made History

Inside The SpaceX Moon Launch That Just Made History

Israel on Friday successfully launched its first privately-funded Moon lander from Florida in the U.S., becoming only the fourth nation to make a landing on the lunar surface. "Beresheet" was perched on top of a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket; The New York Times reported that the rocket also carried an Indonesian communications satellite along with a small experimental satellite for the United States Air Force.

Israel will join the ranks of United States, China, and Russian Federation if Beresheet successfully lands on the lunar surface.

It's expected to take about two months for the lander to reach the moon. In the case of Beresheet is the first Lander to a private company, is set to touch down on the moon.

The static fire test for the launch was completed on Monday with the first launch window opening on Thursday, there was a backup window scheduled for Friday just in case the first launch had to be scrubbed.

"Congratulations to SpaceIL and the Israel Space Agency".

So far, only Russian Federation, the United States and China have made the 384,000-kilometer (239,000-mile) journey and landed spacecraft on the Moon.

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Beresheet (Hebrew for "in the beginning") was put together by non-profit outfit SpaceIL to win the Google Lunar XPRIZE. During this time Beresheet will be taking the moon's surface photos while measuring its magnetic field as well.

NASA, which has installed equipment on Beresheet to upload its signals from the Moon, said last week it aims to land instruments later this year or next year and that it is inviting private sector bids to build and launch the U.S. probes. The Beresheet was launched for Israel and if successful will make Israel the fourth country to land on the moon. "I want to give my Hanukkah allowance to you all because I want to be part of the mission to go to the moon, '" Winetraub, one of SpaceIL's cofounders, said about the excitement and importance that's being created by this occasion.

SpaceIL's "Beresheet" mission, the first private moon-landing attempt, was started by a Google Lunar X Prize team backed by the Israeli-South African billionaire Morris Kahn.

The booster landed smoothly on an offshore ocean platform, after the hottest re-entry yet, according to SpaceX founder and chief executive Elon Musk.

There are no plans for Beresheet to leave the moon, so its creators have also added historical, cultural, and scientific materials on three disks to serve as a sort of time capsule and monument to the first Israeli spacecraft.

Israel is headed for the moon.

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