The Beresheet spacecraft crashed into the moon’s surface during its attempt to land on Earth’s satellite on Thursday evening, dashing the hopes of hundreds of engineers who had worked on the project for years.
Israel could still claim the title of seventh country to make lunar orbit, and the seventh country to reach the lunar surface, though unfortunately not in one piece.
“As far as we can see, we were very close to the moon,” operation control director Alex Friedman said to engineers in the SpaceIL control room in Yehud, east of Tel Aviv, after communication with the spacecraft went down. “We are on the moon, but not in the way that we wanted to.”G
The spacecraft successfully initiated the landing sequence, but a few kilometers above the moon’s surface the main engine failed, meaning the spacecraft could not properly brake in time to cushion its landing.
“Write this down, in three years we will get another spacecraft on the moon, and this one will land in one piece,” said Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.
“If at first you don’t succeed, try again. We’ll try again, and next time we’ll just try it more gently.”
The spacecraft was budgeted at $100 million (NIS 370 million), a fraction of the cost of vehicles launched to the moon by major powers US, Russia and China in the past. It was a joint venture between private companies SpaceIL and Israel Aerospace Industries, funded almost entirely by private donations from well-known Jewish philanthropists, including South African billionaire Morris Kahn, Miriam and Sheldon Adelson, Lynn Schusterman, and others.
“Space is hard,” said Ehud Hayun, a space systems engineer at Israel Aerospace Industries. “I’m not crushed, I’m disappointed, but I’m very proud of what we achieved. We had a lot of success along the way, until the hard landing. We knew it was a risky mission, and the risk we were taking to build it cheap and fast. But we tried.” CONTINUE READING
With Thanks To The Times Of Israel
God is everywhere, even in the news. That’s why we view every news story through the lens of Faith. We are committed to delivering quality independent Christian Journalism you can trust. Disciples Of Truth provides up-to-date news and information affecting the Body Of Christ worldwide from an uncompromising Biblical worldview. Our objective is to present the news with the word of God as our lens, and bring to light what is hid in the darkness. We’re a non-profit organisation who’s focus and trust is in our Father who will supply all our needs according to His riches in glory, this is the hope we strive to complete and fulfil through Jesus Christ until His return.
(John 9:4) “I must work the works of him that sent me, while it is day: the night cometh, when no man can work.”