Israel Aerospace, Germany’s OHB parter in European moon mission


FILE PHOTO: The logo of state-owned Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI), the country’s biggest defence contractor, is seen at their offices next to Ben Gurion International airport, near Or Yehuda, Israel February 27, 2017. REUTERS/Baz Ratner

JERUSALEM (Reuters) – State-owned Israel Aerospace Industries on Tuesday said it has partnered with Germany’s OHB System for a European Space Agency moon mission, which includes developing a lunar lander.

Work with the European agency will be managed by OHB, while Israel Aerospace (IAI) will deliver the moon lander, the company said. It did not disclose financial details, although the agreement could be worth tens of millions of dollars, according to a source with knowledge of the deal.

IAI said it will provide a version of the lunar lander it helped develop for Israeli non-profit venture SpaceIL, which is preparing for a moon launch next month.

The European mission involves sending landers to the moon to test technologies for producing oxygen, water and other raw materials from lunar soil, as well as collect and analyze samples of the moon’s terrain, IAI said.

Such technologies, it added, would be needed for long-term human colonization away from Earth.

Reporting by Ari Rabinovitch; Editing by Steven Scheer

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