Space

The first private lunar probe crashed while landing on the moon

With him lost touch after engine failure.


One of the last photos taken by the device during landing on the moon Photo SpaceIL

The first private lunar rover “Bereshit”, launched by Israel, crashed on the moon after a failure of the main engine. He had to work to ensure the apparatus a soft fit, but for some reason it turned off. Broadcast launch was carried out on YouTube.

The head of the space division of Israel Aerospace Industries Ofer Doron said that despite the failure, the country became the seventh who reached the orbit of the Moon and the fourth who reached its surface.


The reaction of people in the control center after the loss of communication with “Bereshit” Photo by Reuters

At first, Bereshita’s mission went smoothly: after launching, the device successfully reached the satellite in seven weeks and went into orbit without any problems. The purpose of the mission was to photograph the surface of the moon and conduct experiments.

So far, only three countries have made successful landings on the moon — these were the government agencies of the USSR, the USA, and China. Bereshit cost about $ 100 million and was fully funded with private money. The device could make Israel the fourth country to land the device on the moon, and also to become the first private device, sat down on the satellite.

Bereshit before launching SpaceIL Photos

The creation of “Bereshit” engaged non-profit organization SpaceIL for the contest Google Lunar XPRIZE. When it was closed in 2018 , the project team was able to find funding from individuals and bring the development of the apparatus to the end.

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