SpaceIL Unmanned Lunar Mission on Course for the Moon

Israel’s unmanned lunar mission is on course to land on the moon’s Sea of Serenity on April 11. It will be between the Apollo 12 and 15 landing sites. The lower power of the booster rocket required an additional rocket burn to boost its orbit so that it will reach the moon. This burn was successful and the craft will reach lunar orbit where it will adjust its lunar orbit until it is ready to land. The $100 million Beresheet spacecraft is a joint venture between startup SpaceIL and Israel Aerospace Industries. From April 11 to 13th, the spacecraft is expected to carry out two or three days of experiments collecting data about the moon’s magnetic fields before shutting down.
SOURCES- SpaceIl, Israeli Times

5 thoughts on “SpaceIL Unmanned Lunar Mission on Course for the Moon”

  1. Don’t worry… you (and I) won’t (live to see the day). 
    Urban-density Mars colonization would take quite a bit. 

    Remember, 
    • it is drier than any of Earth’s most extreme deserts.
    • And for most of the year, colder. 
    • Its atmosphere is far thinner – at maximum! – than Everest’s peak
    • And annoyingly, the atmosphere has near-no oxygen. 
    • Its soils are mere wind-whipped dusts, 
    • And it hasn’t had hydrological processes for billions of years
    • Its sunlight is 60% less than ours (solar PV that much less per m²)
    • And that thin atmosphere lets in WAY more cosmic radiation
    • Mars’ magnetic field is near-nil (i.e. think “more radiation”)
    • And so far, what ground moisture found is highly caustic.

    But those are NOTHING compared to the ENERGY HURDLE of billions-of-tons of people-supporting stuff from Luna and Earth, out of our gravitational wells, and fighting Sol’s similarly strong well, to achieve a Mars capture orbit. Without any hyperbole whatsoever, using both chemical and space-elevators, then in space nuclear fired VASIMR (or better) ion craft … there’s an almost irreducible TRANSIT TIME (and energy) to transport stuff. And it is big.

    TIME. 
    In space, bathed in hard cosmic radiation. 
    Solar protons. 
    Peppered with ever higher energy impactors the raster you go. 

    Yah… we haven’t made a Moon colony yet, and couldn’t even do a self-sustaining one on Antarctica… so not in our lifetime.

    Just saying,
    GoatGuy ✓

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  2. Just a bit of hyperbole?  “The Solar System is about to get crowded…”

    IF we were to launch a MILLION Mar-bound probes, there being about 145,000,000 km² of Mars to land on, would mean each’d be about 2×√(145) = 24 km away from each other.  15 miles apart. A million of ’em.  

    Not exactly crowded, yah think?

    Wyoming, with 377,000 people outside its top 5 largest cities, having about 97,000 mi² of area, delivers a population density of 4 people per square mile. It is one of our nation’s least populated states. By comparison to Mars’s million-odd scattered hypothetical probes, Wyoming is veritably teeming with people. 680× as many people per unit area as Mars.

    Just putting crowded into perspective. 
    Not really wanting to “do battle” on this. 

    GoatGuy

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  3. This will be the first of many landers, in a tide that will never stop, if all goes well for us.

    We just needed to have the commercial ability to send something there for a known price, and someone eventually picked the bait.

    The same will happen with SH/SS, when a lot more cargo could be sent to the Moon for a known fixed price. Most likely a heck lot more landers and rovers in the short-ish term, and eventually people and commercial cargo back and forth.

    Same for Mars and other places. The Solar System is about to get crowded with both public and commercial human infrastructure.

    The most crucial aspect is building a way to go and make it available commercially.

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