Israeli team investigating 'chain of events' in lunar crash

Israeli team investigating 'chain of events' in lunar crash
People watch the live broadcast of the SpaceIL spacecraft as it lost contact with Earth in Netanya, Israel, Thursday, April 11, 2019. An Israeli spacecraft has failed in its attempt to make history as the first privately funded lunar mission.The SpaceIL spacecraft lost contact with Earth late Thursday, just moments before it was to land on the moon, and scientists declared the mission a failure. (AP Photo/Ariel Schalit)

The Israeli start-up behind last week's failed lunar landing said Thursday that it is still investigating a malfunction that caused the spacecraft to plummet to the moon's surface.

SpaceIL, the non-profit that undertook the lunar mission, said that engineers in mission control received a malfunction notification in the craft's inertial measurement unit, a critical part of its guidance system, during the lander's final descent.

The team issued an activation command, which triggered a "chain of events" culminating in the spacecraft's main engine failing, sending it slamming into the moon.

"We need to go in and understand the technical details inside in greater depth, but that's the sequence that happened in the telemetry," SpaceIL Chief Executive Ido Anteby told reporters in a telephone briefing.

"We have no assumption about the reason why this error happened," he said.

SpaceIL said it would continue to analyze the flight data to determine the cause of the fatal glitch and publish a formal assessment in the coming weeks.

The moonshot, the first by a privately funded venture, sought to make Israel the fourth country to land on the moon, after the Soviet Union, the United States and China.

SpaceIL was founded in 2011 and originally vied for Google's Lunar Xprize, a $20 million challenge for private companies to try to land on the moon. But the competition was scrapped by the tech giant in 2018 when none of the five companies appeared in reach of a predetermined deadline.


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Apr 18, 2019
Humans designed it, humans built it, humans launched it, humans flew it. Yea, human error could possibly be a problem as to why it crashed.

Apr 18, 2019
"Human error" is so vague, it is relatively useless as an explanation.

Apr 18, 2019
Humans designed it, humans built it, humans launched it, humans flew it. Yea, human error could possibly be a problem as to why it crashed.

Or, a computer did the investigation and pinned it on those pesky humans.

Apr 18, 2019
Crashed in Malfunction

Received a malfunction notification in the craft's inertial measurement unit
issued an activation command,
which triggered a "chain of events"
culminating in the spacecraft's main engine failing
sending it slamming into the moon
There is about 1.5s delay
operating manually
wlth an already detected fault
250,000 miles away is a recipe for a disaster
In fact it was a disaster

Apr 19, 2019
How shall we define
"Human Error"?
Such as, your service station mechanic had his boss screaming at him
" To hurry-up getting your replacement tire on.
"Right the hell now!"
& the mechanic fails to properly tighten the lugs.

To speed things up in the very busy garage?
His boss had already signed off on the forms, that the lugs had been properly tested as tighten to specs...

& you had to hurry back to work yourself. Before your own boss started screaming at you?

& the highway surface was corduroy from a combination of recent heavy storms
& overloaded trucks using it as a shortcut...

& you are flying along.
Trying to get over through heavy traffic to your turn-off...

The lugs come off.
The tire comes off.
Your bladder goes off!

Should your Insurance Agent blame ......................? (fill in the blank.)

Let me gurss. In the end you will blame the TV weathergirl for reporting on the storms.

Because you Will never accept responsibility.

The Creed for Our Modern Age...

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