Arutz Sheva spoke to Yonatan Winetraub, co-founder of SpaceIL, after the Beresheet spacecraft performed a critical maneuver into orbit around the moon, in preparation for landing there.

“This is the first time that a private organization was actually able to capture with the moon. We are now the seventh country to reach the moon and capture with it. This is a critical moment because, if we weren’t able to do this, we would venture into the unknown but the moon would not be in reach anymore,” he explained.

“This is a major milestone. We’re much more optimistic right now, though there are still difficulties with the landing [on the moon]. The landing sensor has been tested but not fully in space, but apart from that we have a real shot at getting to the moon,” added Winetraub.

“This project is also about education. We’ve reached over a million kids over the course of the eight and a half years that SpaceIL has been running. We can see that all the kids on Purim were dressed up as astronauts. It’s truly amazing to see the amount of excitement and the hope that some of them will study engineering and science and propel Israel forward.”