Send your name to Jupiter's icy moon, via NASA's Europa Clipper
The spacecraft making the 1.8 billion mile journey will have a poem etched into its surface. NASA is inviting the public to include their names.
NASA is inviting the public on a mission to Jupiter’s icy moon -- Europa. Along with a suite of scientific instruments, Europa Clipper will bring the names of supporters of the mission along for the ride when it launches from Kennedy Space Center next year.
The spacecraft is exploring the moon of Jupiter, peering below its icy shell, which scientists are almost certain contains water. This mission will peek beneath that icy crust and collect data, helping scientsits better understand the conditions of this ocean — and whether or not it could support life.
The spacecraft is engraved with a poem written by U.S. Poet Laureate Ada Limón. “In Praise of Mystery: A Poem for Europa” links the moon and Earth through its shared water, and potential to answer one of science's greatest questions: Are we alone? The campaign is a special collaboration between NASA, the U.S. Poet Laureate, and the Library of Congress.
NASA is inviting the public to sign that poem. So far more than 800 thousand people from around the world have added their names to NASA’s Message in a Bottle campaign. The poem and names will be etched into a silicon microchip -- each line of text is smaller than 1/1000th the width of a human hair.
Europa Clipper will launch from Kennedy Space Center October 2024. After traveling 1.8 billion miles, it will arrive at Jupiter’s moon in 2030.
NASA has invited the public on other missions like this. The most recent Mars rover took with it 11 million names etched on a placard that is now on the red planet.
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