An impression of the artist from the beresheet probe on the lunar surface. (SpaceIL)
The exclusive list of countries that landed spacecraft on the moon will be added this year.
This February, Israel's Beresheet spacecraft launch from the Cape Canaveral Air Station on a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket. Beresheet, the Hebrew word for "beginning," is expected to land on the lunar surface two months later.
The unmanned spacecraft will bring Israel to a select group of nations. Only three countries ̵
1; the United States, the Soviet Union and China – have performed successful "soft landings" on the lunar surface.
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Beresheet was born as part of the Google Lunar XPRIZE competition to land an unmanned probe on the moon. The $ 30 million competition was scrapped last year without a winner, after organizers announced that none of the five finalists would submit the deadline for a moon launch on March 31, 2018, Space.com reports.
Yet, the Israeli team was pushing for the development of its 397-pound spacecraft. Earlier this month, Beresheet was transported from Ben Gurion Airport in Israel to Orlando International Airport in Florida and from there to Cape Canaveral.
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The launch of the SpaceX Launch Complex 40 (SLC-40) is according to the Israeli space agency SpaceIL, which has developed the spacecraft in collaboration with Israel Aerospace Industries, has only been scheduled for mid-February.
A rendering of Beresheet during his scientific mission to measure the magnetic field of the Moon. (SpaceIL)
After two months, the probe will land at Mare Serenitatis in the northern hemisphere of the Moon. SpaceIL indicates that the site has magnetic anomalies so the Beresheet magnetometer can take measurements as part of a scientific experiment. The magnetometer data, developed with the Israeli Weizmann Institute of Science, are provided to NASA.
"Our ultimate goal is to create a profile of the magnetic field of the Moon and to understand its origin," said Professor of the Weizmann Institute and SpaceIL mission scientist Oded Aharonson in a statement.
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. In addition to his scientific mission, Beresheet will also take a time capsule to the Moon. Consisting of three plates, the time capsule data includes symbols such as the Israeli flag and the national anthem of the country, "Hatikvah". Dictionaries in 27 languages are also on the hard drive, the Bible and a mission-inspired children's book. 19659020] (from left) IAI Space Division General Manager Opher Doron; SpaceIL President Morris Kahn; and SpaceIL CEO Ido Anteby. “/>
(from left) IAI Space Division General Manager Opher Doron; SpaceIL President Morris Kahn; and SpaceIL CEO Ido Anteby. (Credit: Tomer Levi)
Beresheet and his time capsule will remain on the lunar surface indefinitely.
"Beresheet has reached an important milestone on her journey to the Moon when she safely arrived at Cape Canaveral." SpaceIL President Morris Kahn told Fox News by email. "The imminent launch and landing of the Moon about two months later will be the culmination of eight years of hard work and dedication."
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The Beresheet spacecraft is loaded into the shipping container (Image credits: Tomer Levi)
China was the first country to successfully land a probe on the other side of the Moon when the Chang'e-4 lander landed on the lunar surface on January 2nd.
The US is the only land that places astronauts on the island Moon, most recently in December 1972 during the Apollo 17 mission. Only 12 men, all Americans, have entered the moon.
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20. July 2019, the 50th anniversary of the historic Apollo 11 The moon landing and the lunar missions are still a fascination.
A checklist that reached the surface of the moon with Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin was recently sold at a $ 62,500 auction in New York. In the same auction, three tiny lunar rocks that the unmanned Soviet Luna 16 mission launched from space were sold for $ 855,000.
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. 21, 2018 was also the 50th anniversary of the momentous launch of Apollo 8. During a series of historic lunar orbits, NASA astronauts Frank Borman, Jim Lovell, and Bill Anders were the first humans to see the other side of the moon.
The Associated Press contributed to this article.  Follow James Rogers on Twitter @jamesjrogers