Failed Israeli lunar lander Beresheet had a secret biological payload
Techspot.com - Fri 16 Aug 21:34 GMT

Back in February, Israeli space startup SpaceIL launched a lunar lander, called Beresheet, on a SpaceX rocket. It would be the nation’s first attempt at landing a vessel on the moon. However, in April, the craft crashed while trying to…

  Back in February, Israeli space startup SpaceIL launched a lunar lander, called Beresheet, on a SpaceX rocket.

  In addition to the NASA cargo, a US nonprofit called the Arch Mission Foundation had stowed a 30-million-page digital library of human knowledge onboard the vessel.

  What was not declared or approved, was a payload containing human DNA and a cache of microscopic organisms called tardigrades, also known as water bears.

  While it is not technically against international guidelines to send bio-matter into space or to the moon, no governing body was even made aware of the cargo.

  However, a few weeks before Spivack was to deliver the digital library to SpaceIL, he and another engineer decided to go ahead.

  They stowed hair follicles, blood samples, dehydrated tardigrades, and a few other samples of genetic Earth-bound bio-matter packed in resin between the plates of the digital library.

  "Technically, I’m the first space pirate," Spivack quipped.