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Israel set to join elite lunar club with first mission to moon

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Israel set to join elite lunar club with first mission to moon

By Joey Roulette

 

2019-02-21T224425Z_1_LYNXNPEF1K1Y1_RTROPTP_4_SPACE-MOON-ISRAEL.JPG

A SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket carrying Israel's first spacecraft designed to land on the moon is prepared for launch on the first privately-funded lunar mission at the Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Cape Canaveral, Florida, U.S., February 21, 2019. REUTERS/Joe Skipper

 

CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. (Reuters) - Israel's first spacecraft built to land on the moon was set for launch on Thursday from Florida on a mission that, if successful, would make the Jewish state only the fourth nation to achieve a controlled touchdown on the lunar surface.

 

The unmanned robotic lander dubbed Beresheet - Hebrew for the biblical phrase "in the beginning" - was due for liftoff at 8:45 p.m. EST (0145 GMT Friday) atop a Falcon 9 rocket launched by California-based entrepreneur Elon Musk's SpaceX company from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station.

 

If all goes according to plan, Beresheet, about the size of a dishwasher, will arrive on the near-side of the moon in mid-April following a two-month journey through 4 million miles (6.5 million km) of space. A flight path directly from the Earth to the moon would cover roughly 240,000 miles (386,242 km).

 

Once launched, the spacecraft will enter a gradually widening Earth orbit that will eventually bring the probe within the moon's gravitational pull, setting the stage for a series of additional manoeuvres leading to an automated touchdown.

 

Beresheet was one of three payloads to be carried aloft by the SpaceX rocket. The two others are a telecommunications satellite for Indonesia and an experimental satellite for the U.S. Air Force.

 

So far, only three other nations have carried out controlled "soft" landings on the moon - the United States, the former Soviet Union and China. Spacecraft from several countries, including India's Moon Impact Probe, Japan's SELENE orbiter and a European Space Agency orbital probe called SMART 1, have intentionally crashed on the lunar surface.

 

The U.S. Apollo program tallied six manned missions to the moon - the only ones yet achieved - between 1969 and 1972, with about a dozen more robotic landings combined by the United States and Soviets. China made history in January with its Chang'e 4, the first to touch down on the dark side of the moon.

 

Beresheet would mark the first non-government lunar landing. The 1,290-pound (585 kg) spacecraft was built by Israeli nonprofit space venture SpaceIL and state-owned defence contractor Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI) with $100 million furnished almost entirely by private donors.

 

SpaceIL officials have said they hope Beresheet will help inspire Israel's defence-focussed space program to pursue more science-oriented missions.

 

Beresheet is designed to spend just two to three days using on-board instruments to photograph its landing site and measure the moon's magnetic field. Data will be relayed via the U.S. space agency NASA's Deep Space Network to SpaceIL's Israel-based ground station Yehud.

 

A series of future moon landings has already been jointly planned by IAI and German's OHB System on behalf of the European Space Agency.

 

(Reporting by Joey Roulette in Cape Canaveral; Editing by Steve Gorman, Bill Berkrot and Cynthia Osterman)

 

 

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-- © Copyright Reuters 2019-02-22
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Who from Isreal is going to the moon? What unmanned,  this is hardly a news story...

More junk on the moons surface, but I guess if some people get up there to live, they can start gathering up some of this stuff to use for their colony.

Geezer

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Good for them. If it is like most of their other scientific endeavors, it will wind up being either used to defend us here in the USA, or benefitting some other portion of humanity.

 

 

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Who from Isreal is going to the moon? What unmanned,  this is hardly a news story...
More junk on the moons surface, but I guess if some people get up there to live, they can start gathering up some of this stuff to use for their colony.
Geezer
It is definitely news. Good news.

Sent from my Lenovo A7020a48 using Thailand Forum - Thaivisa mobile app

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2 minutes ago, Jingthing said:

It's a sign that Israel is staying up to date with the world's most advanced technology which bodes well for Israel continuing to exist in the future even with so many enemies near and far. Israel can't afford not to be one of the global leaders in technology.

Sent from my Lenovo A7020a48 using Thailand Forum - Thaivisa mobile app
 

Ok. Reasonable thinking but for the fact that it can only do so as a puppet state of the USA. And more than likely at the  behest of the USA .

 

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2 minutes ago, Dumbastheycome said:

Ok. Reasonable thinking but for the fact that it can only do so as a puppet state of the USA. And more than likely at the  behest of the USA .

 

Do you really think that the USA controls the Israeli Government and is thus a "puppet state"?

   Some have even suggested that its actually the other way around

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Do you really think that the USA controls the Israeli Government and is thus a "puppet state"?
   Some have even suggested that its actually the other way around
Neither is true. They are indeed close allies.

Sent from my Lenovo A7020a48 using Thailand Forum - Thaivisa mobile app

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