You’d like to look into space, but you’ll probably never get lucky. Now you can at least send your name there. NASA has opened a campaign in which it collects names of people for a sort of “message in a bottle” that will fly with the upcoming mission Europa Clipper. The names will accompany poemwhich was written for Europe by American poetry laureate Ada Limón and which will be engraved in her handwriting on a metal plate attached to the spaceship. Europa, one of Jupiter’s largest moons, is thought to have a deep ocean of salty water beneath its icy crust, meaning there could be suitable conditions for microbial life.
To participate in a campaign with a distinctive name Bottle campaign (Message in a Bottle), just visit the NASA website and fill out a short registration form. The deadline is today 31st of December. So far, more than 2.4 million people have submitted their name. According to NASA, the names of everyone involved in the project will be printed in fine, small print for microchips using an electron beam that can create lines of text smaller than 1/1000 the width of a human hair. These microchips will affixed to a board containing a poem.
The Europa Clipper probe is scheduled to launch in October 2024, and it will take another six years from then to reach Jupiter’s orbit. Once there, it will investigate the potential habitability of Europa through a series of close flybys.