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Israeli Firms Plan Mission to the Moon this December

13 July 2018

December 2018- Launch, February 13, 2019- First Israeli spacecraft lands on the moon!

The cameras inbuilt in the spacecraft shall be taking pictures and videos of the moon's surface and its magnetometer measures the moon's magnetic field. However, the probe will land on the Moon in February 2019.

"It should be noted that only three countries have so far landed spacecraft on the moon - the United States, Russia and China - and all three have done so with tremendous financial investment and with the participation of thousands of engineers", said venture capitalist Maurice Kahn, a major contributor and for years the chairman of the SpaceIL board.

An Israeli non-profit affiliated with the local hi-tech and research communities is planning to launch a spacecraft to the moon as an educational endeavor.

The initiative is mostly funded by individual donors, headed by SpaceIL President Morris Kahn, who donated about 27 million dollars.

The project began as part of the Google Lunar XPrize, which in 2010 offered $30 million (25 million euros) in awards to encourage scientists and entrepreneurs to come up with relatively low-priced moon missions. The Israeli lunar spacecraft will be the smallest to land on the moon, weighing only 1,322 pounds, or 600 kilograms.

Dr. Ido Anteby, SpaceIL CEO added that SpaceIL, in collaboration with IAI, is embarking on the final leg of its complex mission to land the first Israeli spacecraft on the moon.

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"We need to think about backup plans", Weiss said. It is a national accomplishment that will put them on the world's space map.

To date, the Us remains the only country to have successfully conducted manned missions to the moon, with the last departing the lunar surface in December 1972.

"As soon as the spacecraft reaches the landing point it will be completely autonomous".

The mission was started seven years ago, notes the report, as part of Google's Lunar X-prize competition.

The spacecraft is a "hopper", which will land and then take off again with the fuel left in its propulsion system, and then perform another landing 500m away, as required by the XPrize. The data will be transmitted to the IAI control room during the two days following the landing.

After succeeding in raising the critical funds to continue its activity, SpaceIL announced that it was determined to continue on its mission and to launch its spacecraft by the end of the year, regardless of the competition.

It is hoped the mission's success will inspire scientific curiosity among Israeli youth.

Israeli Firms Plan Mission to the Moon this December