it will be years before the first humans set foot on Mars, NASA is giving the
public an opportunity to send their names — etched on microchips — to the Red
Planet with NASA's Mars 2020 rover, which represents the initial leg of
humanity’s first round trip to another planet. The rover is scheduled to launch
as early as July 2020, with the spacecraft expected to touch down on Mars in
rover, a robotic scientist weighing more than 2,300 pounds, will search for
signs of past microbial life, characterize the planet's climate and geology,
collect samples for future return to Earth and pave the way for human
exploration of the Red Planet.
we get ready to launch this historic Mars mission, we want everyone to share in
this journey of exploration," said Thomas Zurbuchen, associate
administrator for NASA's Science Mission Directorate in Washington.
"It’s an exciting time for NASA, as we embark on this voyage to answer
profound questions about our neighboring planet, and even the origins of life
opportunity to send your name to Mars comes with a souvenir boarding pass and
"frequent flyer" points. This is part of a public engagement campaign
to highlight missions involved with NASA's journey from the Moon to Mars. Miles
(or kilometers) are awarded for each "flight," with corresponding
digital mission patches available for download. More than 2 million names flew
on NASA's InSight mission to Mars, giving each "flyer" about 300
million frequent flyer miles (nearly 500 million frequent flyer kilometers).
now until Sept. 30, you can add your name to the list and obtain a souvenir
boarding pass to Mars here: https://go.nasa.gov/Mars2020Pass
Microdevices Laboratory at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena,
California, will use an electron beam to etch the submitted names onto a
silicon chip with lines of text smaller than one-thousandth the width of a
human hair (75 nanometers). At that size, more than a million names can be
inscribed on a single dime-size microchip. The chip (or chips) will ride on the
rover under a glass cover.
will use Mars 2020 and other missions to prepare for human exploration of the
Red Planet. As another step toward that goal, NASA is returning American
astronauts to the Moon in 2024. Government, industry and international partners
will join NASA in a global effort to build and test the systems needed for
human missions to Mars and beyond.
more information on Mars 2020, visit:
more about NASA's Moon to Mars plans, visit:
Members of the public who want
to send their name to Mars on NASA's next rover mission to the Red Planet (Mars
2020) can get a souvenir boarding pass and their names etched on microchips to
be affixed to the rover. Image Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech