SpaceIL, an Israeli foundation established in response to a contest Google started two years ago to challenge innovators around the world to advance private space exploration, is coming very close to meeting its goal of landing a craft on the moon.
The founders and directors of SpaceIL told The Times of Israel that they intend to launch a pod and land it on the moon in 2015.
Once there, the Israeli craft will explore the moon's surface and plant an Israeli flag. The means of transmitting its mission in high definition video, as well as the flag, are contributions made toward the project by Bezeq, Israel's national phone company.
SpaceIL hopes the entire exercise will encourage a fresh wave of enthusiasm for science among Israeli children, as well as advance Google's goal of ushering in a new era of space exploration led not by governments, but by private ventures.
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