In April, SpaceIL announces it has continued building its craft despite the expiration of Google Lunar X Prize, relying on its partnerships with IAI, the Israel Space Agency, equipment manufacturers and scientists; and private donations to the tune of about $100 million. The primary donor is philanthropist Morris Kahn, a South African émigré to Israel.

From left, Aviad Shmaryahu of the Israel Space Agency; SpaceIL founders Yariv Bash and Kfir Damari; philanthropist Morris Kahn, SpaceIL CEO Ido Anteby; and head of IAI’s space division Opher Doron. Photo courtesy of Space IL

“We are moving forward with the project, regardless of the terms or status of the Google Lunar X Prize,” said newly appointed SpaceIL CEO Ido Anteby, formerly of the Israel Atomic Energy Commission. “SpaceIL and Israel Aerospace Industries are committed to landing the first Israeli spacecraft on the moon.”