Israeli Spacecraft Beresheet Fails In Attempted Moon Landing

Israel’s attempted Moon landing fails just moments before touchdown on the moon.

Israel launched its first lunar mission, a spacecraft called Beresheet, on Feb. 21, riding piggyback on a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket. It spent six weeks orbiting Earth in leisurely, ever-widening circles before slipping into orbit around the moon on April 4, 2019.

A disappointing outcome today I know but remember only three other countries on Earth have ever reached the moon. Israel is now #4. Congratulations!


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With Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and a throng of dignitaries and well-wishers looking on, a small Israeli spacecraft attempted to pull off the first privately-funded non-superpower moon landing Thursday, but the lander apparently crashed to the surface after engine trouble and communications glitches during the final descent.

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“We had a failure in the spacecraft,” said Opher Doron, general manager of Israel Aerospace Industries space division, builder of the Beresheet lunar lander. “We unfortunately have not managed to land successfully.”

It was not immediately known what went wrong. The descent, from an altitude of about 15 miles, began on time just after 3 p.m. EDT. At that point, the spacecraft was about 500 miles from the intended landing site on a broad plain known as Mare Serenitatis.

Computer displays in the mission control room in Israel showed Beresheet’s thrusters and main engine firing as expected to lower the craft’s altitude and slow its forward velocity. The descent appeared to be going smoothly when Doron reported a problem with the craft’s inertial measurement unit.

A few moments later, telemetry apparently dropped out. It came back a few moments after that, but problems with the main engine developed and after an uncertain pause, Doron reported the spacecraft was lost. More

A bit disappointed about this project, a tiny nation put all this effort to land on the moon but unfortunately failed to accomplish it. Hope they will try and achieve it next time.

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