SpaceX delayed again on Wednesday the launch of a rocket carrying the first private lunar module, a mission carried out by a Japanese company.
SpaceX has delayed without date the launch of the Japanese lunar lander Hakuto-R , the first private mission to land on the surface of Earth’s satellite.
The Hakuto-R lander , built by Tokyo-based company ispace , was scheduled to launch on a Falcon 9 rocket from Cape Canaveral on November 30. It took 24 hours to carry out additional tests on the rocket, and finally this December 1st it has been postponed again.
“After further launch vehicle inspections and data review, we will withdraw from tomorrow’s launch of ispace HAKUTO-R Mission 1 ; a new launch date will be shared once confirmed,” SpaceX announced via Twitter on Wednesday night.
The Falcon 9 launcher for this mission has already been used on four previous flights.
This will be the flight
The journey will take three to five months and will see the spacecraft venture into deep space and back. Once on the Moon , it will carry out a series of experiments in cooperation with various commercial and agency entities on Earth, ispace reports .
The mission will reach up to 1.5 million kilometers from Earth at its farthest point, roughly four times the distance between Earth and the Moon. The spacecraft will enter lunar orbit for about a month before the entire spacecraft descends for the lunar landing.
Surface operations will last approximately two weeks, with landing scheduled as close to lunar sunrise at the landing site as possible to maximize mission time.
A successful landing will also allow the United Arab Emirates to land a 10-kilogram rover called Rashid on the moon that will deploy from Hakuto-R , with the aim of studying its surroundings for about 14 Earth days.