XPRIZE Offers $1 Million Moonshot Award for Lunar Landing

Beresheet lander (Credit: SpaceIL)

LOS ANGELES, March 28, 2019 (XPRIZE PR) —XPRIZE, the global leader in designing and operating world-changing incentive competitions, announces that it will offer a $1 million Moonshot Award in recognition of an XPRIZE team demonstrating the achievement of a “moonshot” technological feat outside the parameters or timeframe of an XPRIZE competition.

The Award is inspired by SpaceIL, a former Google Lunar XPRIZE team, whose mission to become the first private, non-government entity to land on the surface of the Moon is underway, with an anticipated landing on April 11, 2019. A successful lunar landing will result in SpaceIL receiving the inaugural Moonshot Award from XPRIZE.

“Though the Google Lunar XPRIZE went unclaimed, we are thrilled to have stimulated a diversity of teams from around the world to pursue their ambitious lunar missions, and we are proud to be able to recognize SpaceIL’s accomplishment with this Moonshot Award,” said Anousheh Ansari, chief executive officer of XPRIZE.

SpaceIL was founded in 2011 by Yariv Bash, Kfir Damari and Yonatan Winetraub, in order to compete in the Google Lunar XPRIZE. In 2015, SpaceIL became the first team to announce a launch contract, and they launched for the Moon on a SpaceX Falcon 9 on February 21, 2019.

“SpaceIL’s mission represents the democratization of space exploration. We are optimistic about seeing this first domino fall, setting off a chain reaction of increasingly affordable and repeatable commercial missions to the Moon and beyond,” said Peter H. Diamandis, founder and executive chairman of XPRIZE.

XPRIZE will consider future Moonshot Awards in other domains, recognizing both literal and figurative moonshots.

About XPRIZE

XPRIZE designs and operates global competitions to incentivize the development of technological breakthroughs that accelerate humanity toward a better future. Active competitions include the $20M NRG COSIA Carbon XPRIZE, the $15M Global Learning XPRIZE, the $10M ANA Avatar XPRIZE, the $7M Shell Ocean Discovery XPRIZE, and the $5M IBM Watson AI XPRIZE. For more information, visit www.xprize.org.

  • Jeff Smith

    That’s kinda cool they’re willing to pay AFTER the competition is over. If they want to claim credit for advancing some of the Moon ventures, then they have to be willing to pay – even if it is AFTER the fact.

  • ThomasLMatula

    Gotta keep the myth of the X-Prize going if they are going to get new donors for it.

  • Saturn1300

    A little ways to go to make up for the huge 100m$ the mission cost for doing next to nothing. Good thing they have billionaires to pay for it. A test I guess.

  • Paul451

    “We’re still relevant! Right guys? Guys? … Here’s a million dollars.” “Uh yeah, totally relevant.”

  • badcompanyman

    “doing next to nothing”? Please explain. They are about to land on the moon (just a reminder its 250,000 miles away, no freeways etc.) in the first non governmental mission. Are you perhaps a member of a team doing doing something more than next to nothing?