Boarding pass

The public can submit a name (and a name only) to travel with the next rover being sent to explore Mars.

WASHINGTON, D.C. — Those in need of the ultimate novelty gift should check with NASA.

The National Aeronautics and Space Administration is offering a chance for people to make their name on Mars before humans set foot on the red planet.

The Mars 2020 Pass program offers members of the public the opportunity to submit their name to NASA, which will then be stenciled on chips, and carried to the planet on the Mars 2020 rover.

“As 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. “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 itself.”

The Mars Rover Opportunity made headlines earlier this year in February, when it was declared officially dead by NASA after 15 years of exploration. Launched in 2003, the rover lost communications on June 12, 2018, following a dust storm and failed to reboot.

Those interested in having their names make the long trek to the red planet can make their submission online at https://go.nasa.gov/Mars2020Pass. The final date for submission will be Sept. 30.

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