The unnamed spacecraft will weigh around 585 kilograms at launch and it planned that aircraft will reach the moon on February 13, 2019.
The unmanned device will be sent to the United States in November to begin preparations for its launch, which will be carried out from Cape Canaveral aboard SpaceX’s Falcon 9 rocket.
Once the craft lands on the moon, it will photograph and film the area surrounding the landing site, as well as measure the magnetic field of Earth’s satellite.
Three young engineers formed the SpaceIL and partnered with the state-owned Israel Aerospace Industries, reimagining a smaller craft while they believed they could descend on the moon by 2013. More than two-thirds of the weight is fuel, which will be used up by the time it lands on the moon’s surface.
“I am filled with pride that the first Israeli spacecraft, which is in its final construction and testing phases, will soon be making its way to the moon”.
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The project began when young engineers – Yariv Bash, Kfir Damari and Yonatan Winetraub – chose to build a spacecraft and take part in the Lunar Xprize competition sponsored by Google, which originally included a $20 million prize for the first group of contestants to land an unmanned spacecraft on the moon.
An Israeli organisation announced plans today to launch the country’s first spacecraft to the moon in December, with hopes of burnishing Israel’s reputation as a small nation with otherworldly high-tech ambitions.
Israeli billionaire philanthropist and SpaceIL President Morris Kahn, who donated around $27 million to the project, told reporters that its objective is in part to inspire young people in Israel to study science and join the country’s space projects.
The dimensions of the spacecraft are 1.5 meters (4.9 feet) high and 2 meters (6.5 feet) in diameter. Israeli scientist Kfir Damari said.
Following blast off, the spacecraft will separate from the launch rocket at an altitude of 60,000 kilometres (37,282 miles), and will begin orbiting Earth in elliptical orbits. “It is a national accomplishment that will put us on the world’s space map”, said SpaceIL President Morris Kahn. The measurements are intended for research conducted at the Weizmann Institute of Science-UCLA.