CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. (FOX 35 Orlando) - An Israeli spacecraft rocketed toward the moon for the country's first attempted lunar landing, following a launch Thursday night by SpaceX.
A communications satellite for Indonesia was the main cargo aboard the Falcon 9 rocket, which illuminated the sky as it took flight.
With Thursday's launch, the 2019 rocket season is finally upon us. The government shutdown caused major set-backs to the schedule, so right now, the excitement is building on Space Coast.
Israel is sending a lander to the moon, a major accomplishment for their space program. This will be their first time exploring the lunar surface. If successful, Israel will become the fourth country in history to land a spacecraft on the moon. The United States, China and Russia have done this, and Israel trying to get on the list.
“We cannot afford a full rocket, that would jump, increase the cost significantly, so we basically do a rideshare we share the rocket with somebody else, so this is Uber style space exploration, so we are riding shotgun on the rocket with another satellite with us,” Israeli space officials said Thursday night.