The Israeli nonprofit organization SpaceIL announced that this year plans for the first time in the country’s history to send a spacecraft to the moon. This will use the Falcon 9 rocket built by the company SpaceX Elon musk. This probe may become the first unmanned spacecraft on the moon, the launch of which was financed from private sources.
As noted, the probe diameter should be about two meters and a height of approximately six feet and weighing at startup it will be 585 pounds. Thus at the moment of landing, the spacecraft will be three times easier — more than 400 kilograms of its weight is fuel that will be burned during the flight. Takm way, the research station will be the smallest of all, ever reaching natural satellite of the Earth.
The spacecraft will move “jumps” using the remaining fuel, it will rise above the moon’s surface and then land half a kilometer from the place where it was located originally. The main objective of the probe will measure the magnetic field on the moon — this kind of data will allow to learn more about the bowels of the satellite. Also the probe is mounted on the surface of the moon, the flag of Israel. Experts believe that the success of the mission could generate among a generation of Israeli youth increased interest in space exploration and technology development, just as it happened in US polarogram “Apollo”.
Initially the project was created as part of the Google Xprize competition, however, in March this year, the organizers of this competition decided not to award the main prize in the amount of $ 20 million to anyone. After that, the company SpaceIL began to look for other funding sources, and managed to collect more than $ 88 million. A significant portion of this amount was allocated by the Israeli billionaire South African-born Morrin Kan.
To date, only three countries in the world managed to successfully send to the moon spacecraft — those were the USSR, USA and about ten years ago, China.
We will remind, in the future, the company SpaceX plans to send to the moon for space tourists. However, recently the company admitted that in 2018 to implement these plans will not work, therefore this kind of launch was postponed, at least until the summer of 2019. However, the official representative of the SpaceX James Gleason assured that plans to send tourists into space, the company is not refused, and the interest for this kind of travel among potential customers continues to grow.
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