A spacecraft has failed in its attempt to generate history as the very first lunar assignment that was privately funded.
"The price of a mistake here could have been infinite", said Opher Doron, space division general manager at Israel Aerospace Industries, which functioned with SpaceIL on the project. Beresheet 2.0 Just days after Beresheet crashed on the moon, the SpaceIL team's spirits are already up again.
"This is really a milestone and it actually gives us a true shot in the moon", said Yonatan Winetraub, co-founder of SpaceIL, " the Israeli nonprofit that built the spacecraft.
SpaceIL President Morris Kahn, an Israeli-South African philanthropist and the non-profit organization's main backer, released a video late Saturday night welcoming the outpouring of support for the world's first privately-funded moon expedition, and its unfortunate failed attempt to perform a controlled landing on the lunar surface on Thursday. Despite this disappointing incident, the team behind the Beresheet mission will try again, so Israel can be the fourth nation to accomplish a soft touchdown on the moon's surface, Space.com reported.
Fifth, SpaceIL will be awarded a $1 million prize for its achievements.
The average distance to the Moon is 380,000km (240,000 miles) - Beresheet travelled more than 15 times that distance. "We're going to put it on the moon, and we're going to complete the mission".
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Still, the spacecraft achieved some milestones.
Beresheet made the final cut, but after several deadline extensions, the competition ended a year ago without a victor. "It's been an awesome journey, I hope we get a chance for another one".
Drawn to lunar orbit, Beresheet will trace smaller and smaller loops around the moon.
Both Nasa and Esa have also announced their intention to use commercial landers to deliver scientific payloads to the lunar surface.
Apollo 11 moonwalker Buzz Aldrin expressed his regrets "for what nearly was" and tweeted: "Never lose hope-Your hard work, team work, and innovation is inspiring to all!"
Beresheet will land on a plain of lava, if all goes according to plan. You have blazed the trail to the Moon for us all. Because SpaceIL couldn't count on that, however, it opted for a more complex route.