A bible left behind on the lunar rover by Apollo 15 Commander David Scott may one day be joined by a Sefer Torah, a hand-written scroll sacred to Judaism. New Scientist reports this is the first of three culturally important artifacts that the Israeli-based team behind "Torah on the Moon" is hoping to send to the lunar surface. A copy of the Vedas scriptures and the I Ching might be next. "These three texts are among Earth's most ancient documents, created over 3,000 years ago. They are significant to billions of people," said group founder Paul Aouizerate, who is looking to raise €12 million to €15 million in funding for the project.
These three texts are among Earth's most ancient documents
The "Torah on the Moon" team is currently looking to partner with one of the entrants in the Google Lunar X Prize — a $30 million competition challenging participants to successfully land a robot on the moon. It is believed that the group may be in talks with the Barcelona Moon Team, one of the competing parties. This is not the first time that a Google Lunar X Prize hopeful has been contacted about depositing an object on the moon. Two weeks ago, Japanese beverage maker Otsuka announced it will be collaborating with another contestant to place a can filled with powdered sports drink and children's dreams on Earth's natural satellite.
New Scientist writes that the European Space Agency's engineering arm in the Netherlands confirmed that it was commissioned to test the Sefer Torah's capsule. The container is supposed to safeguard the document from radiation and temperature changes for at least 10,000 years. Further details such as the identity of the team that will be working with the "Torah on the Moon" initiative are expected to be unveiled in the next few months.