Google Lunar XPRIZE


JUNE  2018

The new space race has ended.

For good.

An important update from Google Lunar XPRIZE

After close consultation with the five finalists of Google Lunar XPRIZE over the past several months, we have concluded that

no team will make a launch attempt to reach the Moon

by the March 31st, 2018 deadline. This literal “moonshot” is hard, and while we did expect a winner by now, due to the difficulties of fundraising, technical and regulatory challenges, the grand Google Lunar XPRIZE of $30 million will go unclaimed.

We are extraordinarily grateful to Google for enabling this 10-year journey with us and for having the foresight and courage to support and catalyze the commercial space industry, which was the ultimate goal of this competition. As a result of this competition, we have sparked the conversation and changed expectations with regard to

who can land on the Moon.

Many now believe it’s no longer the sole purview of a few government agencies, but now may be achieved by small teams of entrepreneurs, engineers, and innovators from around the world. We are thankful to the teams for their decade of hard work, and acknowledge that a number of our teams are now, finally building flight ready hardware, contracting with launch providers and are close to being able to make their attempt to land on the Moon.

XPRIZE is exploring a number of ways to proceed from here. This may include finding a new title sponsor to provide a prize purse following in the footsteps of Google’s generosity, or continuing the Lunar XPRIZE as a non-cash competition where we will follow and promote the teams and help celebrate their achievements.

Even though we are disappointed that we do not have a winner at this time, we are proud of the impact that the Google Lunar XPRIZE has achieved to date. Over the course of this competition:

  1. Teams and the companies that own the teams have raised more than $300 million through corporate sponsorship, government contracts and venture capital, including the largest space-related series-A investment of $90 million in the Japanese HAKUTO;
  2. Hundreds of jobs were created and the first commercial space companies were established in India, Malaysia, Israel and Hungary;
  3. Through educational programs, we have engaged hundreds of thousands of young people across the globe, sparking an interest in exploration and STEM fields;
  4. We have also seen regulatory achievements: one team received the first-ever ‘Mission Approval’ from the U.S. Government to send a private spacecraft beyond Earth’s orbit and to the Moon in their quest to complete their first lunar mission;
  5. We have already awarded more than $6 million in prize money to teams over the course of the competition, in recognition of the milestones they have accomplished; and,
  6. Finally, we have secured global media exposure for our teams, including a recent 32-page feature in National Geographic, a segment on The Today Show, and a 9-part web series, Moon Shot, executive produced by J.J. Abrams, inspiring millions of people around the world with the story of the Google Lunar XPRIZE.

In conclusion,  it’s incredibly difficult to land on the Moon. 

If every XPRIZE competition we launch has a winner, we are not being audacious enough! — [ see above:  Google’s foresight and courage to support and catalyze the commercial space industry was the ultimate goal of the Lunar XPRIZE competition. ]

We will continue to launch competitions that are literal or figurative moonshots, pushing the boundaries of what’s possible. We are inspired by the progress of the Google Lunar XPRIZE teams, and will continue to support their journey, one way or another, and will be there to help shine the spotlight on them when they achieve that momentous goal.

Peter H. Diamandis, Founder & Executive Chairman, XPRIZE & Marcus Shingles, Chief Executive Officer, XPRIZE.  January 23, 2018



To make the very, very long story (below) short, if any non-governmental, private space agency, like HAKUTO, MoonExpress, SynergyMoon, TeamIndus, or SpaceIL, would successfully lend a small rover on the Moon with a high-definition video camera, then we all could clearly see what’s really up there:

April 2018  —  Scientists helping NASA put a rover on the Moon are scratching their heads about why the mission was canceled and why they were told to end their operations within the next month:

” SpaceX’s Falcon 9 launch cameras were cut off nine minutes into its stream to “protect national security”. NOAA recently asserted that cameras on the second stage of the Falcon 9 are a “remote sensing space system”, this means that a provisional license would be needed for Space X to continue a live video feed from the equipment. SpaceX applied for the licence and received approval from the NOAA but was unable to work around conditions that required footage to be cut off. ”     WTF ?!

What is particularly interesting about this government-ordered cutoff is that SpaceX camera, as you can clearly see in the above original SpaceX video footage, was not pointing at any sensitive installations on the ground, like Area  51, but was mostly capturing empty orbital space. Are there national security secrets in Earth’s orbit?

Yes, there are! But only for the eyes of unsuspecting public. Any country, or corporation, which has satellites in orbit, can use video cameras to see, and record, anything and everything. They are just prohibited from disseminating such footage to the public. That’s all.

See the following original NASA footage starting at 4m 55s. On the right hand side of the frame you will see a white, symmetrical object passing from top to bottom, almost the size of the Shuttle’s external tank. As soon as the object appears, the operator nervously, as if in panic, immediately moves camera away from it, and cuts off the transmission:


And what about the above photo? Looks like perfect square ruins of building foundations, somewhere in a desert’s sands.

Middle East?  Sahara?  Gobi desert?  No.  The above photo is from planet Mars:


Pula, Croatia, 23 January 2018 (Updated 26 January 2018)

Today, XPRIZE officially announces that the $30M Google Lunar X PRIZE competition will conclude without the prize being awarded on 31.3.2018. As part of the Google Lunar X PRIZE challenge all teams invested 10 years with the goal of initiating a “new space race” to foster the vitality of new born companies and trigger innovation within the private space industry. Amongst the five finalists SYNERGY MOON was the only international team.

SYNERGY MOON believes the outstanding positive outcome generated by the Google Lunar X PRIZE is the existence and capability of all finalist teams, as they have been able to show how a group of visionaries and experts could create synergies within international teams and collaborate for the achievement of a goal involving high risk taking and repetitive overcome of failures. “We are not dreamers, we are the directors of our dreams” states Nebojsa Stanojevic, co-founder of SYNERGY MOON and BEING IN SYNERGY.

Beyond the constraints of the Google Lunar XPRIZE, SYNERGY MOON joins forces with TEAM STELLAR (Croatia / Australia), OMEGA ENVOY (USA), SpaceMETA (Brazil) and INDEPENDENCE-X (Malaysia) to share a rocket launch provider to the moon and expands its global network of scientists, engineers, artists, investors and educators such as SPACE KIDZ INDIA, ASTRONOMERS WITHOUT BORDERS, DWINGELOO RADIO TELESCOPE and ANALOGUE TO DIGITAL, to continue its space value co-creation efforts. Uniting the synergetic shared challenges of the last decade, the end of a mission marks the launch of

global space coalition:  BEING IN SYNERGY.

The new movement will be advocating and sharing its updates through its newly established web platform soon to be released.

BEING IN SYNERGY builds up on these achievements and emphasizes on shared visions regarding the creation of a “sustainable future for humanity on Earth and beyond”. Its aim is to bring awareness and access to private space exploration, travel, technology and education to a broader audience.

“Since I was a little child I was homesick when I looked up at the stars and finally they are closer than ever before.” states Martine-Nicole Rojina, owner of MPATHY STUDIO and co-founder of BEING IN SYNERGY.

BEING IN SYNERGY will collaborate with SPACE FOR HUMANITY, a non-profit organization whose purpose is to democratize space by selecting a diverse group of non-astronauts to travel to the edge of space at the end of 2018. This group will have the chance to see our unique home planet Earth as a sphere floating in a vacuum, shielded and nourished by a paper-thin atmosphere and thereby, expand an individual’s perspective on what it means to be a human on earth. By sending everyday citizens to space, SPACE FOR HUMANITY will overcome the elite status of space travelers and create tangible relationship to space for a global society.

Along with the internationally celebrated space event, Yuri’s Night, on the 12th of April 2018, a decisive announcement will be made in regards of the planned moon landing. Meanwhile, the collaboration will consist of a series of organized space awareness events, art collaborations curated by the creative company MPATHY STUDIO, educational projects, and the launch of a participatory platform giving everyone the possibility to apply for membership of the BEING IN SYNERGY global space coalition and utilize the network.

BEING IN SYNERGY is already in the process of onboarding multiple influencers to represent the “new space age”. They will act as guiding orientation lighthouses and translate complex science, technology, art and societal developments into immersive experiences, which can be perceived without the need of any specific knowledge or educational background.


Were American landings on the Moon a hoax of literally cosmic proportions? Over the decades, more and more researchers think so. There is a good possibility that while Astronauts did in fact land on the Moon, TV transmissions that were sent from the Moon were pre-recorded in a studio on Earth in order not to reveal what’s really up there. In 2011 NASA made a nonbinding request that no spacecraft land within a 1.2-mile buffer around the six Apollo landing sites.

Ladies and gentlemen, my government, NASA, which many of us in the United States say stands for: Never A Straight Answer, proceeded to erase 40 rolls of film of the Apollo Program — the flight to the Moon, the flight around the Moon, the landings on the Moon, the walking guys here and there. NASA erased 40 rolls of film of those events. Now we’re talking about several thousand individual frames that were taken that the so-called authorities determined that you did not have a right to see. I’ve become furious. I’m a retired Command Sergeant Major. I was never famous for having a lot of patience. (source)

A group of private Russian engineers and space enthusiast aim to develop and launch a small satellite to investigate the Moon Landing Hoax theory. The satellite will take pictures of footprints and the lunar rovers, both American Apollos and Soviet Moonwalkers, left on the Moon. Let’s see if it is going to happen. I strongly doubt.

  4. Why Isn’t There A Camera On The Moon Filming Earth?


We live in a strange world, and as Neil Armstrong once said, there are “great ideas undiscovered, breakthroughs available to those who can remove one of the truth’s protective layers.” (source ; source)

Fast forward to today, and a number of people have become aware of the fact that not all of what goes on behind the scenes is made public. This is precisely why the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) was created; it’s a federal freedom of information law that allows for the full or partial disclosure of previously unreleased information and documents controlled by the United States government.

There are still many obstacles in the way of full transparency, one of which is the use of ‘national security’ to keep information classified and hidden from public viewing. This has become more evident with the revelations offered by WikiLeaks and Edward Snowden, but the problem goes deeper still. Did you know that the U.S government classifies roughly five hundred million pages of documents every single year? This is a completely separate topic in itself and if you’re interested in learning more about this, you can check out our article about the ‘Black Budget.’

Multiple NASA personnel have made some pretty shocking claims about the moon. George Leonard, a NASA scientist who obtained various official NASA photographs of the moon, many of which he published in his book Somebody Else Is On The Moon, is just one of these people.

Although the photos are small and their resolution is not up to today’s standards, they show details of original, massive prints. While Leonard published the identifying code numbers of the photos in his works to back up their source, we still can’t say for sure that they were real, and their poor resolution only makes matters worse. Far more compelling than these photos are his statements about what was found on the moon, along with his verified NASA credentials. Leonard was not the only one with a credible background trying to tell the world the truth regarding the moon and the photos that were taken from the Apollo missions.

“Ladies and gentlemen, my government, NASA, which many of us in the United States say stands for Never A Straight Answer, proceeded to erase 40 rolls of film of the Apollo Program — the flight to the Moon, the flight around the Moon, the landings on the Moon, the walking guys here and there. They erased, for Christ’s sake, 40 rolls of film of those events. Now we’re talking about several thousand individual frames that were taken that the so-called authorities determined that you did not have a right to see. Oh, they were ‘disruptive,’ ‘socially unacceptable,’ ‘politically unacceptable.’ I’ve become furious. I’m a retired Command Sergeant Major. I was never famous for having a lot of patience.” (source)

The quote above is from Bob Dean, who was speaking at a conference in Europe. Bob is a retired US Army Command Sergeant Major, and he also served at the Supreme Headquarters Allied Powers Europe (SHAPE) of NATO as an intelligence analyst.

When it comes to the UFO phenomenon, we now have public disclosure of thousands of documents along with hundreds of credible witness testimonies. But that is a separate topic, which you can learn more about here.

It’s also important to note here that the Russian government recently called for an international investigation into the U.S. moon landings regarding the disappearance of film footage from the original moon landing in 1969. They are also referring to the (approximately) 400 kilograms of lunar rock obtained during multiple missions between 1969 and 1972. (source)

Leonard argued that NASA knew about extraterrestrial activity on the moon and attempted to hide that information. He’s not the only one to make such an assertion.

“Read the books, read the lore, start to understand what has really been going on, because there is no doubt that we are being visited. The universe that we live in is much more wondrous, exciting, complex and far reaching than we were ever able to know up to this point in time. Mankind has long wondered if we’re alone in the universe. But only in our period do we really have evidence. No, we’re not alone.” – Dr. Edgar Mitchell, the 6th man to walk on the Moon

Here is a clip of NASA astronaut Dr. Brian O’Leary saying the same thing. George Leonard is not the only NASA scientist to say some strange things about the moon. Recently, a plasma scientist by the name of Dr. John Brandenburg brought up the issue as well. He was the Deputy Manager of the Clementine Mission to the moon, which was part of a joint space project between the Ballistic Missile Defence Organization (BMDO) and NASA. The mission discovered water at the moon’s poles in 1994. (Sources: page 16 of 18 ; source ; source)

According to Brandenburg in an interview from this documentary, “It was (the Clementine Mission) a photo reconnaissance mission basically to check out if someone was building bases on the moon that we didn’t know about. Were they expanding them?” He then went on to state:

“Of all the pictures I’ve seen from the moon that show possible structures, the most impressive is a picture of a miles wide recto-linear structure. This looked unmistakably artificial, and it shouldn’t be there. As somebody in the space defence community, I look on any such structure on the moon with great concern because it isn’t ours, there’s no way we could have built such a thing. It means someone else is up there.” 

If you were to tell the average person that you think another civilization, advanced enough to have mastered space travel, had been to the moon before we got there and is possibly still going there, you would, without a doubt, receive some very peculiar looks in return. On the other hand, if that other person were to decide to hear you out, you would probably get their attention pretty quickly. For some, this type of information can be overwhelming, even terrifying, and that’s okay. Many people are not ready to open their minds up to these possibilities, but the truth of the matter is, it’s something we are going to have to confront eventually. We are clearly heading toward the inevitable reality of extraterrestrial contact — that is, if we smarten up and start taking care of our planet to the best of our ability. Perhaps we can make it long enough to realize this future, or maybe it’s coming sooner than we think.



On the canyon road just outside Las Vegas, Robert Bigelow‘s story takes a turn that some may find, to put it lightly, improbable. He told us this is where his grandparents had a close encounter with a UFO.


Robert Bigelow:  It really sped up and came right into their face and filled up the entire windshield of the car. And it took off at a right angle and shot off into the distance.

The story sparked his obsession, and explains the alien looking out from the side of Bigelow Aerospace.  And it made for the kind of conversation you don’t ordinarily have with an accomplished CEO.

Lara Logan:  Do you believe in aliens?

Robert Bigelow:  I’m absolutely convinced. That’s all there is to it.

Lara Logan:  Do you also believe that UFOs have come to Earth?

Robert Bigelow:  There has been, and is, an existing presence, an ET presence on the Planet. And I spent millions and millions and millions. I probably spent more as an individual than anybody else in the United States has ever spent on this subject.

Lara Logan: Is it risky for you to say in public that you believe in UFOs and aliens?

Robert Bigelow: I don’t give a damn. I don’t care.

Lara Logan: You don’t worry that some people will say, “Did you hear that guy, he sounds like he’s crazy”?

Robert Bigelow: I don’t care.

Lara Logan: Why not?

Robert Bigelow: It’s not gonna make a difference. It’s not gonna change reality of what I know.

Lara Logan:  Do you imagine that in our space travels we will encounter other forms of intelligent life?

Robert Bigelow:  You don’t have to go anywhere.

Lara Logan:  You can find it here? Where exactly?

Robert Bigelow:  It’s just like right under people’s noses. 

The FAA confirmed to us that for years, it referred reports of UFOs and other unexplained phenomena to BIGELOW AEROSPACE, a company Robert Bigelow owns. He told us he’s had his own close encounters, but declined to go into detail.


In early April 2016, a good friend of mine, a former senior intelligence officer with a strong interest in UFOs and Extraterrestrial Aliens (or Unidentified Aerial Phenomena, UAP), called me and asked if I had ever heard of Tom DeLonge from the punk rock band, Blink-182. I had not, as my musical tastes ceased growing somewhere between Motown and classic rock. Aware of my own lifelong interest in UFOs and Extraterrestrial Aliens, my friend suggested a recent interview with Tom DeLonge containing remarks on his coterie of former and current U.S. Government advisers who were offering him guidance on what they purportedly knew about UFOs and Extraterrestrial Aliens, or at least offering helpful hints on how Tom DeLonge could approach the subject matter in books and films with a degree of veracity. The interview was illuminating, primarily due to Tom‘s desire to research and disseminate information on UFOs and Extraterrestrial Aliens in a more balanced and scientifically rigorous fashion than is currently being done in some of the popular literature on the subject. To me, this sounded like a highly innovative and worthwhile endeavor. And as a career civil servant, I found that Tom’s intent to portray the U.S. Government in a more positive light was an added plus! Within a few weeks, Tom DeLonge and I managed to synchronize our schedules and get together for some very long and animated discussions that culminated in an agreement to work together  on advancing credible research on UFOs and Extraterrestrial Aliens and reporting this research to the general public. I readily agreed to work with Tom DeLonge because I found him to be a highly innovative, creative artist with a very serious mission to get the message out on this most perplexing, complex and intriguing subject.

My own fascination with UFOs and Extraterrestrial Aliens started in earnest while I was an undergraduate and later a graduate student. Reading the visionary and mystical poetry of William Blake and the transcendental musings of the American Romantics fueled my interest in the “other.” It was only a short leap for me to the works of the seventeenth-century Swedish mystic Emanuel Swedenborg (who knew Emerson had so many of Swedenborg’s works in his library?), Christian Mysticism, Mystery Schools, and then onward to the vast library of metaphysical literature. Those on the journey recognize the path. As for my formal introduction to UFOs and Extraterrestrial Aliens, as we know it in today’s context, it came suddenly and unexpectedly. I will not attempt to go into

my UFO experience, but I will say that it was one of life’s game changers for both my wife and me. The experience was simultaneously frightening, perplexing, frustrating and absurd. It was also both physical and emotional, although I am undecided as to whether there was any spiritual addendum. Almost thirty years later, I am still not sure what to make of the experience. What I do know, however, is that this event changed my view of what constitutes our collective version of reality.

ufo aliens

I joined the Central Intelligence Agency in 1983 and had a wonderful twenty-five-year career there, working briefly for the Directorate of Science and Technology and then later transferring to the Directorate of Operations, the clandestine service, for the bulk of my career where I served as an operations officer. I was later promoted into the ranks of CIA’s Senior Intelligence Service. As an intelligence officer, I was taught that my primary job was to collect information—intelligence—for the president. And that the information I collected had to be well sourced and vetted thoroughly and properly. In other words, the information had to be as accurate and truthful as humanly possible. And this is the same approach I use when discussing UFOs and Extraterrestrial Aliens. Speculation is fine in and of itself, and when dealing with something as complex and extraordinary like UFOs and Extraterrestrial Aliens, speculation is more often than not all we have to work with. But we must always label speculation as such and not muck up further what is already a vast and murky body of literature on the subject, much of which is barely intelligible. And I am convinced that this is how Tom DeLonge also wants to approach research on UFOs and Extraterrestrial Aliens. Having said the above, however, I am very much aware, particularly in regard to UFOs and Extraterrestrial Aliens, that this measured and linear approach is arguably laughable. How do you make sense of any of it when there does not appear to be any apparent “there” there? UFOs and Extraterrestrial Aliens seem to work on another level (consciousness, dimensions?) unknown to our science. A friend once remarked to me that it perhaps UFOs and Extraterrestrial Aliens seem to exist at the nexus of quantum mechanics and consciousness. If that is so, and I personally believe this may be a viable way forward, then our science needs to expand its horizons to include things beyond the quantifiable and replicable.

If you work in the Intelligence Community (IC) and follow UFOs and Extraterrestrial Aliens, then you are aware that there is no readily identifiable place in the IC that houses a department or unit that works exclusively on UFOs and Extraterrestrial Aliens or any other type of paranormal phenomena. Read US Army Colonel John B. Alexander’s book, UFOs: Myths, Conspiracies, and Realities, for a look at how the inner workings of our military and intelligence communities deal—or do not deal openly—with this issue.

John Alexander Book




I have worked across the CIA and various elements of the IC throughout my career, and I can state that I have never happened upon a place that looks at this topic, exclusively or otherwise. Does that mean the U.S. Government does not investigate UFOs and Extraterrestrial Aliens, or other paranormal phenomena? In my opinion, they probably do:


And I also believe what John Alexander has said in his book, that “disclosure has already happened, it is the smoking gun confirmation that we are after.”

UFOs and Extraterrestrial Aliens are real. There is no way to deny or refute all the evidence accumulated over just the last few decades alone.

But what UFOs and Extraterrestrial Aliens are, exactly? What intruded, uninvited, into my life almost thirty years ago? Well, that is the quest Tom DeLonge is pursuing, pulling together a strong team of scientists, researchers and adventurers willing to venture into the unknowable for answers. We may stumble upon something that we should not have disturbed; then again, we may just fall headlong into a new realm of existence that has been hidden from us and has always been our birthright.

Jim Semivan,  Alexandria VA,  November 2016

Jim Semivan retired in 2007 after a 25-year career in the Central Intelligence Agency’s National Clandestine Service. At the time of his retirement he was a member of the CIA’s Senior Intelligence Service. Jim served multiple overseas and domestic tours along with senior management positions in CIA headquarters. He is the recipient of the Agency’s Career Intelligence Medal.


Press Release,  10 July 2018


First Israeli lunar spacecraft set to land on the Moon on 13 February 2019, making Israel fourth country to do so.

At a historic press conference today at Israel Aerospace Industries MBT Space facility in Yehud, Israel, nonprofit SpaceIL and IAI announced a lunar mission to launch from Cape Canaveral, Fla., this December, and land on the moon on Feb. 13, 2019. A final launch date will be announced closer to the event. The lunar landing will culminate eight years of intensive collaboration between SpaceIL and IAI, and will make Israel the fourth country after the U.S., Russia and China to reach the Moon.

The spacecraft will be launched as a secondary payload on a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket from Cape Canaveral, Florida, and its journey to the Moon will last about two months, ending on its expected landing date.


July 2018.  The following is continuation of my above conspiracy theory narrative.

We had the five finalists of Google Lunar XPRIZE:

  2. Moon Express
  3. Synergy Moon
  4. Indus
  5. SpaceIL

In their own words:  Moon Express is a privately financed commercial space company blazing a trail to the Moon. Our prime directive is to open up the Moon’s vast resources for humanity, and establish new avenues for commercial space activities beyond Earth orbit.

Well, how would you feel if it turned out that what is hiding behind Moon Express’ front is none other than big, bad Lockheed Martin?

Don’t get me wrong, please. Lockheed Martin is just doing community service donating free political advice and technical expertise for the benefit of the future of humanity in space. Pure old charity. Trust me.

Of course, the above was merely a hypothetical scenario. The following one, however, is not. In their own words:  SpaceIL is an Israeli nonprofit organization working to land the first Israeli spacecraft on the Moon. The organization was founded in 2011, when three young Israeli engineers undertook upon themselves to enter the international Google Lunar XPRIZE competition.

As usual, it all started in a completely innocent way: Three young engineers and their nonprofit organization. With a little help from IAI. The Israel Aerospace Industries is Israel’s prime aerospace and aviation manufacturer, producing aerial and astronautic systems for both military and civilian usage, and is wholly owned by the government of Israel.

So, what is the rest of five finalists doing in the meantime?

Synergy Moon:  February 2018. Following the lead of team Hakuto is booking a payload carriage contract with team Indus for delivery of our rover or scientific payload to the Moon. We started discussions with team Indus right after the new year to carry our payload on their lander, aiming for a launch at the end of 2018 or early in 2019.

I am not surprised that SpaceIL will use SpaceX, which presently is the most cost-effective and widely available launch service provider. If an Israeli organisation can use American SpaceX in Florida to go to the Moon, then American company, like Moon Express should be able, too. Why not? Well, there is a small difference between Moon Express and SpaceIL.

Moon Express is a purely civilian business, whereas SpaceIL seems to be a front for Israeli military. Israel is a US military ally, and therefore can be trusted with keeping Moon secrets. And that is the reason why, as opposed to the remaining four, SpaceIL has everything booked and ready to go. It is conceivable that SpaceIL will be the only one of the five, which will actually land on the Moon:

If Moon Express wants to go snooping on the Moon, they need to become more trustworthy for the US military and intelligence community. How do you do it? For the start, you hire important people with right connections.

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