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Cape Canaveral, FL - SpaceX Rocket Launched Carrying Israel's First Lunar Lander

Published on: February 21, 2019 09:26 PM
By: Reuters
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A SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket carrying Israel's first spacecraft designed to land on the moon lifts off 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 SkipperA SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket carrying Israel's first spacecraft designed to land on the moon lifts off 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, FL -  A SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket blasted off from Florida on Thursday night carrying Israel’s first lunar lander on a mission that if successful will make the Jewish state only the fourth nation to ever to achieve a controlled touchdown on the moon’s surface.

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The unmanned robotic lander dubbed Beresheet - Hebrew for the biblical phrase “in the beginning” - soared into space from the Cape Canaveral Air Force Station at about 8:45 p.m. EST (0145 GMT Friday) atop the 23-story-tall rocket.

Beresheet, about the size of a dishwashing machine, was one of three payloads carried aloft by the Falcon 9, part of the private rocket fleet of billionaire entrepreneur Elon Musk’s California-based company SpaceX.

The two other payloads set for deployment are a telecommunications satellite for Indonesia and an experimental satellite for the U.S. Air Force.

Beresheet was due to be released into Earth orbit about 34 minutes after launch, followed 15 minutes later by deployment of the two satellites.

Just a few minutes after blastoff, the Falcon 9’s nine-engine suborbital main stage booster separated from the upper stage, flew back to Earth and landed safely on a drone ship floating in the Atlantic Ocean off the Florida coast.

If all goes according to plan for Beresheet, the lander 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 deployed, 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 maneuvers leading to an automated touchdown.



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Read Comments (6)  —  Post Yours »

1

 Feb 21, 2019 at 11:57 PM lazy-boy Says:

Good for Israel,
hope it works!

2

 Feb 22, 2019 at 01:24 AM FSMYID Says:

not a nation that needs 4 billion usd in aid

3

 Feb 22, 2019 at 07:22 AM elyeh Says:

Mazel Tov!

Scheduled to arrive at the moon, IY"H, for Pesach.

4

 Feb 22, 2019 at 09:13 AM PaulinSaudi Says:

Well, best of luck.

5

 Feb 22, 2019 at 01:10 PM Another clueless commenter Says:

Reply to #2  
FSMYID Says:

not a nation that needs 4 billion usd in aid

The 4 billion usd in aid is not a handout it's used for building better defensive and offensive security systems guns tanks cameras radars sensors etc. And also used for watching all the terrorist organizations in the middle east which is easier to do if you're closer to them i.e. Israel all this security and technology info is then shared with the US so no it's not a handout it's actually paying for something that israel gives them unlike when the US gives money to the 3rd generation "refugees" in gaza which is used to buy weapons to attack israel and america and the only thing the US gets back is more dead Americans

6

 Feb 22, 2019 at 01:35 PM elyeh Says:

Reply to #2  
FSMYID Says:

not a nation that needs 4 billion usd in aid

This was paid for primarily by private individuals from all over the world, not the Israeli government !

7

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