Japanese rocket firm I space’s attempt to become the first private entity in the world to put a lander on the moon ended in failure, the company said on Wednesday.
Soon after the company lost contact with its lander the employees of ispace bowed their heads in respect of the HAKUTO -R lunar exploration program.
…”We don’t expect to complete the lunar landing at this time,”CEO and founder Takeshi Hakamada said in a statement, with the company saying the Hakuto-R mission 1 lander was believed to have made a “hard landing”on the moon’s surface.
The Japanese firm “determined that there is a high probability that the lander eventually made a hard landing.”
The 7 foot lander carried a mini lunar rover for the United Arab Emirates and a robot from Japan designed to roll around in the moon dust.
Named HAKUTO, Japanese for white rabbit the spacecraft had targeted Atlas crater in the north eastern section of the moon’s near side more than 50 miles across and just over 1 mile deep.
Founded in 2010 ispace hoped to start turning a profit as one way taxi service to the moon for other businesses and organizations.
The company has so far raised raised $300 million to cover the first three missions according to reports in Japanese media.
“We will keep going, never quit lunar quest,” he said.
The moon is suddenly hot again with numerous countries and private companies clamoring to get on the lunar bandwagon.
China has so far successfully landed three spacecraft on the moon since 2013, and US , India and South Korea have satellites currently circling the moon.
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