Beresheet, the privately-funded SpaceI-IAE moon project successfully completed all its assigned maneuvers but failed to touch down on the moon. During its six-week voyage, the mooncraft broke out of earth’s orbit to circle the moon in ever decreasing elliptical cycles, reducing speed until it was minutes away from landing on the moon on Thursday night, April 11. The lander had been operating autonomously according to instructions fed into its computer in advance. Then, suddenly, while orbiting the moon at 6,000km/h, shortly before making its schedule autonomous descent, the main engine developed a fault and contact was lost with the control room at Israeli Aerospace Industries. Instead of making a soft landing, Beresheet went into free fall 25km above the surface and 800km from the landing site. The project, which if successful, would have made Israel the fourth country to land a spacecraft on the moon after the US, Russia and China, took eight years of preparation and an investment of $100m in private funds and donations. Israel will have to settle for being the seventh country in the world to attempt a moon landing and try again.