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Israel's Beresheet spacecraft fails to land on moon

April 12, 2019 5:13 am

The first privately funded mission to the Moon has crashed on the lunar surface after the apparent failure of its main engine.

The Israeli spacecraft – called Beresheet – attempted a soft landing, but had several technical and communication problems.

The aim of the mission was to take pictures and conduct experiments.

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Only government space agencies from the former Soviet Union, the US and China have achieved moon landings.

The mission has cost about $100m and has paved the way for future low-cost lunar exploration.

Beresheet, which is Hebrew for “in the beginning”, was a joint project between SpaceIL, a privately funded Israeli non-profit organisation, and Israel Aerospace Industries.

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