SpaceIL just accomplished something amazing, sending a lander into orbit around the Moon. This is the first time a private company has sent something into Lunar Orbit in human history.
But they didn’t quite make it to the moon’s surface, which was part of the overall mission. The craft crashed onto the surface of the Moon. So it got they’re, just not in one piece and not functional.
Doron Opher, general manager of Israel aerospace industry space division, which collaborated on building the spacecraft said “We had a failure in the space craft. We unfortunately have not managed to land successfully. Well, we didn’t make it, but we definitely tried. And I think the achievement of getting to where we got is really tremendous. I think we can be proud, but they should be.”
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu of Israel who attended the event at the missions command center said, “If it first you don’t succeed, you try again”
They are definitely going to try again, they’re not done. They’re going to use the lessons that they learned from this mission. Google has awarded SpaceIL 1 Million Dollars in additional funding for the work that they have already done and to continue with more work in the future.
“SpaceIL’s mission not only touched the Moon, it touched the lives and hearts of an entire world that was watching,” said Peter H. Diamandis, executive chairman and founder of XPRIZE. “The legacy SpaceIL will have on the future of the space industry is significant. This team’s ability to build a lunar lander for $100 million and less than 50 engineers is remarkable, a leap forward towards affordable and accessible space exploration. Congratulations to Morris Kahn, their primary benefactor, and the entire SpaceIL team for all their accomplishments — we are so proud.”
SpaceIL was founded in 2011 by Yariv Bash, Kfir Damari and Yonatan Winetraub, in order to compete in the $30 million Google Lunar XPRIZE. In 2015, SpaceIL became the first team to announce a launch contract, and they launched for the Moon on a SpaceX Falcon 9 on February 21, 2019.
“As a testament to the team’s passion and persistence, we are presenting this $1 Million Moonshot Award to the SpaceIL team at our annual Visioneering Summit in October 2019, with the hope that they will use these funds as seed money towards their education outreach or Beresheet 2.0, a second attempt to fulfill the mission.” said Anousheh Ansari, chief executive officer of XPRIZE. “We are so proud and humbled to have served as the catalyst for this mission, not just to further private space exploration, but to increase access to education, career opportunities, and role models in this field, something that is very much in line with the values of the XPRIZE Foundation.”
If they would have succeeded they would have been the first private organization to have built a moon Lander and to land it on the Moon.
Other nations have done this before, United States, the Soviet Union and China. But never a private organization.
The craft was just thirteen miles from the surface of the moon. They snapped a picture of the moon with the spacecraft in the foreground.