Israel’s lunar probe Beresheet appears to have crashed on moon

Israel’s lunar probe Beresheet appears to have crashed on moon

After a further series of burns on Wednesday, the craft prepared to begin its landing sequence just after 3 p.m. ET on Thursday, but a series of issues with communications, telemetry and engine function prevented it from successfully landing on the moon. Moments later, the mission was declared a failure.

"We definitely crashed on surface of moon", said Opher Doron, general manager of the space division of Israel Aerospace Industries.

The main goals, SpaceIL and IAI representatives have said, involved advancing Israel's space program, increasing the nation's technological knowhow and getting young people more interested in science, technology, engineering and math. And, most importantly, it failed to land because its mission was never about actually landing on the Moon anyway.

Benjamin Netanyahu, Israel's Prime Minister, was present in the control room for the event.

Don't stop believing! We came close but unfortunately didn't succeed with the landing process.

The mission ended Israel's hopes of joining the ranks of Russian Federation, the U.S. and China as the only countries to have made controlled landings on Earth's nearest neighbour.

It's aiming for a landing site a few hundred miles east of the Apollo 15 landing site, and the landing will be live-streamed by SpaceIL, the Israeli nonprofit behind the mission. By the time connectivity was restored, the spacecraft was moving too quickly to be fully braked before impacting the lunar surface.

In an explainer video, SpaceIL and IAI said its preparations for the historic moon landing included locating a level plain with a diameter of 30 km free of rocks and craters.

Only the US, China, and Russian Federation have successfully landed on the Moon. "And we really are making this dream come true".

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The failure was a disappointing ending to a 6.5 million kilometre lunar voyage, nearly unprecedented in length, that was created to conserve fuel and reduce price.

The Beresheet spacecraft was launched on board a Falcon 9 rocket in late February.

Last week, Beresheet executed the engine burn needed to put itself into orbit around the moon.

Mr Ramon's widow, Rona, who was a big supporter of Beresheet, died of cancer in December.

Crash debris from the uncrewed Israeli lander Beresheet will permanently occupy the lunar surface after SpaceIL's effort to land on the moon failed Thursday (April 11). "I knew it would give us in Israel a sense of pride". The SpaceIL team was helped by multiple donations from the Israeli Space Agency as well as a donation from billionaire Sheldon Adelson in 2014.

"No matter what actually happened, what SpaceIL is doing here achieves our whole vision". "I told him that 'if you're serious, I'm in.' The three of us met in a bar in the city of Holon, Israel, and over a couple of beers we took out a paper and started drawing what the spacecraft was going to look like".

The sheer enormity of the undertaking makes it seem impossible, but thanks to some incredible rocket science, Israel has joined the short list of nations that have so much as sent a craft into the Moon's orbit.

India hopes to become the next lunar country in the spring with its Chandrayaan-2 mission.

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