Never miss a story

Get subscribed to our newsletter


×
People watch a screen showing explanations of the planned landing of Israeli spacecraft Beresheet at the Planetaya Planetarium in the Israeli city of Netanya, April 11, 2019, before it crashed during the landing. VOA

An Israeli spacecraft lost contact with Earth moments before it was to land on the moon and crashed late Thursday, failing in an ambitious attempt to make history as the first privately funded lunar mission.

The spacecraft lost communication with ground control as it was making its final descent to the moon. Moments later, the mission was declared a failure.


“We definitely crashed on surface of moon,” said Opher Doron, general manager of the space division of Israel Aerospace Industries. He said the spacecraft was in pieces scattered at the planned landing site.


An image of the lunar surface taken by Israeli spacecraft Beresheet, obtained by Reuters from Space IL on April 11, 2019. VOA

Engine shut down

Doron said that the spacecraft’s engine turned off shortly before landing. By the time power was restored, he said the craft was moving too fast to land safely. Scientists were still trying to figure out the cause of the failure.

“One of the inertial measurement units failed. And that caused an unfortunate chain of events we’re not sure about,” he said. “The engine was turned off. The engine was stopped and the spacecraft crashed. That’s all we know.”

The incident occurred in front of a packed audience that included Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and was broadcast live on national television.

The small robotic spacecraft, built by the nonprofit SpaceIL and state-owned Israel Aerospace Industries, had hoped to match a feat that has been achieved only by the national space agencies of three countries: the U.S., Russia and China.


The spacecraft lost communication with ground control as it was making its final descent to the moon. Moments later, the mission was declared a failure. VOA

“If at first you don’t succeed, try try again,” Netanyahu said. He vowed to put an Israeli spacecraft on the moon “intact” in the next two years.

Scientists, who were giddy with excitement only seconds earlier, were visibly distraught, and celebrations at viewing centers across the country were dashed.

President Reuven Rivlin hosted dozens of youngsters at his official residence. The children, some wearing white spacesuits, appeared confused as the crash unfolded.

“We are full of admiration for the wonderful people who brought the spacecraft to the moon,” Rivlin said. “True, not as we had hoped, but we will succeed in the end.”

Launched in February

The failure was a disappointing ending to a 6.5 million-kilometer (4 million-mile) lunar voyage, almost unprecedented in length, that was designed to conserve fuel and reduce price.


“If at first you don’t succeed, try try again,” Netanyahu said. He vowed to put an Israeli spacecraft on the moon “intact” in the next two years. VOA

The spacecraft hitched a ride on the SpaceX Falcon rocket, launched from Florida in February. For the past two months, Beresheet traveled around the Earth several times before entering lunar orbit.

The U.S. space agency NASA broadcast the landing attempt live on its dedicated TV channels, as well as online.

ALSO READ: NASA’s Spacecraft Observes Water Molecules Movement on Moon

“While NASA regrets the end of the SpaceIL mission without a successful lunar landing of the Beresheet lander, we congratulate SpaceIL, the Israel Aerospace Industries and the state of Israel on the incredible accomplishment of sending the first privately funded mission into lunar orbit,” said NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine.

“Every attempt to reach new milestones holds opportunities for us to learn, adjust and progress,” he added. “I have no doubt that Israel and SpaceIL will continue to explore, and I look forward to celebrating their future achievements.” (VOA)


Popular

Free Press journal/wikipedia

A tougher anti-tobacco law, COTPA is suggested.

During the National Youth Week, which runs from the 12th to the 18th of January to commemorate Swami Vivekananda Jayanti, experts have advocated for making India tobacco-free.

Priyank Kanoongo, Chairman of the National Commission for Protection of Child Rights (NCPCR) On the occasion of National Youth Day, Chairman of the NCPCR pushed for increased tariffs on a wide variety of tobacco products.India Today/wikipedia

Keep Reading Show less
Pro kerala/wikipedia

The government's key concerns has been to empower the tribal community in the state.

The new efforts in the Himalayan area aimed at empowering members of the Gujjar-Bakerwal and Gaddi-Sippi groups appear to have alarmed Kashmiri lawmakers. These leaders are concerned that if these areas are given more influence, they would lose a significant portion of their voter base.

For the past 70 years, politicians have offered residents of indigenous communities verdant fields. They were told that they would be given all of their rights and treated equally to everyone else. Politicians, on the other hand, have failed to keep their promises. The transformation in J&K's status quo, on the other hand, has proven to be a watershed moment for these impoverished areas.

Keep Reading Show less
True Scoop News/wikipedia

"The most lovely aspect of this event is that it's a multi-talent presentation," she about the upcoming talent show.

By Ila Sankrityayan

Parineeti Chopra, who will join Mithun Chakraborty and Karan Johar on the panel of judges for the reality programme 'Hunarbaaz Desh Ki Shaan,' says she had been waiting for a project like this for a long time and jumped at the opportunity.

Keep reading... Show less