Inside The SpaceX Moon Launch That Just Made History

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Israel is planning to make space history by becoming the first country to land a privately-funded spacecraft on the moon. SpaceX also launched and recovered its first-stage booster on a drone ship in the Atlantic Ocean, despite what it called hard landing conditions. It's a first not just for Israel but for commercial space.

SpaceX recovered a payload fairing for the first time in 2017.

In addition to a textbook launch and payload deployments, SpaceX scored yet another success in its pioneering technology for recycling its own rockets.

The Air Force Rrch Laboratory (AFRL) S5 spacecraft is meant to set whether low-priced satellites could be used for Department of Defence missions.

The Nusantara Satu was successfully deployed to its geosynchronous transfer orbit after the launch Thursday and was expected to begin working shortly. The mission is part of the renewed global interest in the Moon, sometimes called the "eighth continent" of the Earth, and comes 50 years after American astronauts first walked on the lunar surface.

If all goes according to plan for Beresheet, the lander will arrive on the near-side of the moon in mid-April following a two-month journey through 6.5 million km of space.

Despite the financial troubles that prevented it from making the Xprize deadline, SpaceIL found more funding and is continuing the mission without the promise of a $20 million prize.

Israel seeks to become only the fourth country to successfully land on the moon, after Russian Federation, the USA and China.

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After the successful launch of the Israeli spacecraft Beresheet into space, the team in the control room was looking into a small problem with its star navigation system on Friday.

"Its mission is to transmit photos and video of its new home and conduct scientific measurements", SpaceX said of Beresheet.

The Israeli team said glare from the sun on the spacecraft's sensors was making it more hard than expected for the spacecraft to orient itself according to the position of the stars as it prepared for its first orbit around the Earth, the first stage of its slow seven-week journey to the moon.

Israel's state-owned satellite manufacturer Israel Aerospace Industries built the Beresheet lander.

Nearly 34 minutes after launch, Falcon 9 reached the edge of space and Beresheet was jettisoned into Earth orbit.

The Nusantara Satu satellite is a satellite from Indonesia that will help provide fast and accessible internet to the area there.

The spacecraft will use electric propulsion to get into orbit and has traditional, chemical thrusters for stationkeeping.

In an interview this week, PSN CEO Adi Rahman Adiwoso said the operator has been leasing capacity on roughly half a dozen other spacecraft and borrowing AsiaSat-3S, a almost 20-year-old satellite from Hong Kong-based AsiaSat, to provide communications services across the Indonesia.