An Israeli company says it has pushed back the launch of what it hopes will be the first private lunar mission.
Officials from SpaceIL and the state-owned Israel Aerospace Industries told reporters that the landing craft, dubbed Beresheet – or Genesis, will travel in February to Florida, where, propelled by a SpaceX Falcon rocket launch, it will commence its months-long voyage to the moon.
It had been planned to launch this month.
Israel Aerospace Industries manager Opher Doron stressed that the small craft, about the size of a washing machine, faces a “difficult, arduous journey” because it will have to make a number of orbits before landing.
If successful, the team promises the landing will be a breakthrough for Israeli technology and commercial space travel.