NASA has come up with an unique way to get the public involved in their space adventures. This time the agency is allowing people to send their names via a microchip that will be blasted into space aboard the Orion spacecraft’s maiden flight.
On Dec. 4 the craft will launch with the name designation of Exploration Flight Test-1. It will launch from Cape Canaveral in Florida and will orbit Earth for 4.5 hours then splashing down in the Pacific Ocean. After recovery of the craft, participants will have their data re-launched on future flights especially to Mars and other celestial targets.
This is part of bringing the public into the picture. Exciting the space program and making a play for a better humanity. This craft, the Orion, is designed to carry astronauts and perhaps civilians one day to Mars and the asteroid belt.
So far over 267,000 people have signed up with hopes of being those rare few people to be launched into space. Last year the Dutch company known as Mars One has been looking for volunteers to go to Mars in 2022. The catch is there is no way to return to Earth but tens of thousands of applicants have filed for the ride anyway.