SpaceIL will be the first candidate to launch its lunar probe as part of the competition initiated by Google, the Lunar XPrize. The US offers $ 30 million in prizes to those who manage to send a probe to the moon in order to stream high definition images from our natural satellite. A challenge faced by 16 teams to date. They have until December 31, 2017 to complete this task particularly difficult because the probe will travel at least 500 meters on the lunar surface. The Israeli team is the first to book a launch window on the flight of SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket. She won the $ 20 million grand prize?
16 teams vying for the moon
Israeli, American, Italian, Malaysian, Japanese, German, Indian, plus some international teams are 16 teams that are engaged in the Google Lunar XPrize. Initiated in 2007, the challenge will devote the first team who manages to land a probe on the moon and retransmit images from the surface of our satellite. The winner will receive the sum of $ 20 million, the second to reach the moon will receive $ 5 million. This achievement must be completed before December 31, 2017.
The Israeli team, founded in 2010, is the first to have booked a flight from SpaceX niche. The probe will be shipped on a Falcon 9 rocket for a flight in the second half 2017. SpaceIL will have no room for error. The probe has been officially presented to the President Reuven Rivlin Israel. It has many advanced from the initial project. It now looks like the lower part of the US LEM, that of Apollo, but smaller scale. The module must be small and light enough to be shipped free on board a commercial launch. In order to make simple and light, the engineers chose not to equip their wheeled lunar module. This will make a short hop to the moon through its retro rocket landing for besides the broadcasting of images from the moon, the competition requires the probe to travel at least 500 meters on the surface of our satellite natural for the prize.
A subscription was launched on the website of SpaceIL project to finance the expedition. The ball is now in the court of the other team have a few months to find a commercial rocket and book their flight slots into space to launch their lunar module before the end of 2017.
Translation : Google Translate
Source : “The space race is on: first Google Lunar XPRIZE team headed to the moon“, Google Blog , October 7, 2015