The Beresheet 2 project will launch effective immediately, SpaceIL chairman Morris Kahn announced on Saturday evening.
The South African born billionaire said: “We are going to actually put a new spacecraft on the moon and we are going to complete the mission.” He gave a large amount of the $100 million required for the Beresheet first mission. SpaceIL said in a statement on Friday that “a technical glitch in one of Beresheet’s components triggered the chain of events” that led to its crash. Harel Locker, chairman of Israel Aerospace Industries, said in a statement that the fact that Beresheet travelled 248,548.5 miles from Israel until it touched the moon “is a tremendous technological achievement for the State of Israel, which is now among only seven superpowers who have reached this close to the moon.
The prize committee of the Google Lunar X Prize competition, on Friday, announced that it would award SpaceIL a $1 million “Moonshot Award” for its achievements. Private donors were already pledging funds for the new project. Benjamin Netanyahu, who had visited the Beresheet control room in person for the anticipated landing during the first mission, has pledged state support for a new Israeli moon mission.