Israel to launch first manned mission to the moon

By YONA SCHNITZER

ISRAEL (TPS) — SpaceIL, an Israeli NGO, announced Tuesday morning they will be sending a manned spacecraft to the moon before the end of 2019.

Mockup of Israeli lunar module. (Photo by Kobi Richter/TPS)

The spacecraft is set to be launched using Elon Musk’s private aerospace company SpaceX, with a scheduled launch date of December 13, 2019.

The spacecraft, which will be the smallest to ever land on the moon is expected to land roughly two months after leaving Earth, making Israel the fourth country to ever land a spacecraft on the moon, following Russia, the United States and China.

The original press conference to announce the venture was postponed by a week.

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