NASA and the Israeli Space Agency Enter into a Partnership for the Beresheet2 Lunar Mission

Beresheet2 mission, set to launch in 2025, underscores Israeli ambition to return to the Moon

The Israeli Space Agency on Wednesday signed an agreement with NASA for full collaboration on Israel’s upcoming Beresheet2 lunar mission. The two organizations had already collaborated in 2019 on the first Beresheet mission. The space probe launched in February 2019 had managed to reach the orbit of the Moon before crashing while trying to land on the moon.

The Beresheet2 mission, which is expected to launch in 2025, underscores Israel’s ambition to return to the Moon. The mission is made up of three spacecraft: an orbiter that will stay in space and two landers that will go to the lunar surface. NASA will provide SpaceIL and the Israel Space Agency with its advanced communications systems, which are essential for tracking the spacecraft during the critical phase of the mission. “We need NASA equipment to better understand the situation and to transmit data,” explained the boss of SpaceIL.

One of the landers will land on the far side of the Moon with NASA instruments on board to carry out radiation measurements. “Radiation is very important in space exploration, especially deep space, for the survival of equipment and astronauts,” Sarid said, stressing the importance of measuring their levels on the Moon. . In exchange, Israel will freely share with NASA the data it collects with its own instruments.

SpaceIL/ Via TwitterA snapshot taken by the Israeli probe Beresheet, while it was about a few kilometers above the moon, April 11, 2019.

“The Beresheet project is the pride of Israel’s cutting-edge science and technology,” Israeli Science Minister Ofir Akunis said at the signing. “The collaboration with NASA and the Israel Space Agency is further testimony to the excellent relations between Israel and the United States and the intensification of cooperation on scientific and technological issues.” The United States is not alone in participating in the Beresheet2 mission: last year, SpaceIL signed a partnership with the United Arab Emirates to cooperate on the mission.

The signing of the agreement between the Israel Space Agency and NASA took place within the framework of the 18th annual Ilan Ramon International Space Conference. This conference is held annually in memory of Ilan Ramon, Israel’s first-ever astronaut, who died in the space shuttle Columbia disaster in 2003. Israel has since successfully sent another astronaut into space, Eytan Stibbe.

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