Even though Israel’s foremost privately sponsored operation to the Moon collapsed in April on the lunar surface, Kfir Damari—Co-Founder of a startup SpaceIL (that designed the spacecraft)—is not quitting. He is working on his second attempt for the Moon plus he is also toying with the thought of sending a mission to Mars. In particular, he wishes to inspire kids in Israel to dream big. It took them almost 8 Years and around $100 Millions until Beresheet—which is Israel’s first spacecraft—was launched in February aiming to reach the Moon. Although that was failed attempt—crashing just a few kilometers from the lunar’s surface—Israel still became the seventh nation to reach the Moon’s orbit and fourth country to attempt a soft landing.
Damari said he never saw that try as a failure. In a phone conversation, he said, “For us, it was an achievement story as we wanted to make a difference and we did. The primary aim was to educate kids and motivate a future generation of researchers.” He added that we are aiming high and Beresheet 2 will be different. This second attempt will take around 3 Years and will be considerably inexpensive than the first project—worth $80 Millions. As we already have the know-how and the design, plus we learned from the last mistakes. He referred to a series of technological breakdowns that ultimately led to the crash.
Similarly, SpaceIL was in news as the company encourages a fun escape room touring the U.S. The iCenter for Israel Education is asking the groups how fast one can solve various challenges to find out the launch code and send SpaceIL’s Moon spaceship to the lunar surface. That is the question groups nearby North America in an exclusive moveable “escape room” experience. Over the last year, the SpaceIL-motivated activity has voyaged across North America, welcoming people as young as 13 Years, plus administrators, educators, and lay leaders.