(October 25, 2019 / JNS) A representative from the Israel Aerospace Industries talked on Tuesday about Israel’s continued hopes of becoming the fourth country to land softly on the moon, following a failed attempt in April.
Israel’s “Beresheet” aircraft crashed on the moon due to a computer glitch that prevented the spacecraft from slowing down properly during its descent.
“We are very proud and happy with the ‘Beresheet’ mission,” Ehud Hayun, a space systems engineer at Israel Aerospace Industries, which built the spacecraft, said at the 70th International Astronautical Congress. “It was the first of many. It’s made us the seventh country to orbit the moon, fourth to attempt landing.”
During his presentation, Hayun discussed what went wrong with the “Beresheet” mission and added that Israel will continue its efforts to land properly on the moon. He explained that the team behind “Beresheet” has mostly stayed on and intends to fly a new version of the aircraft in the next two to three years, according to Space.com.
The successor to “Beresheet” will include upgraded computers, some design adjustments aimed at increasing its odds of landing softly and, unlike the original “Beresheet” spacecraft, an obstacle-avoidance system for landing.
Looking back at the attempted landing, Hayun said “on the technical level, things were very difficult because we had a huge task defined: the first low-cost lunar mission. We had no reference to look at. It’s never been done before.”
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