When the Perseverance rover landed safely on the Martian surface, within Jezero Crater, on February 18, 2021, it was also a safe landing for the nearly 11 million names on board.
How did NASA collect the names?
From NASA “Send your name to Mars“The campaign invited people from all over the world to submit their names to ride the rover. And people did, with a total of 10,932,295 names submitted. Those names are now found on the surface of Mars, written in three Tokens the size of a fingernail aboard the Perseverance rover.
How were the french fries made?
Engineers at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory etched the names onto the chips using a beam of electrons. The “E-beam” machine they used allows writing very small features: less than 1 micron, much less than the width of a human hair. They typically use this machine for high precision fabrication in JPL’s microdevice lab.
Along with the nearly 11 million names, the engineers also included the essays of 155 finalists in the “Name the Rover“Essay contest. This included the winning essay of”Perseverance, “As well as the essay for”Ingenuity, ”The name selected for the experimental helicopter that accompanied the rover to Mars.
At NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida, prior to launch, the chips were mounted on a small plate attached to the center of the rear crossbeam in Perseverance, where they are visible to cameras on the rover’s mast.
Also on the plate: a laser-etched graphic representing Earth and Mars connected by the rays of the Sun giving light to both. Written in Morse code in the rays of the sun is a hidden message, “Explore As One.” The illustration pays tribute to the plates of the Pioneer spacecraft and the Golden Records carried into space by Voyager 1 and 2.
How can I register to send my name on the next mission to Mars?
If you submitted your name to Mars on Perseverance, you can retrieve your boarding pass here. If you missed that opportunity, you can register at send your name on a future mission to Mars.
|Chip size||Each of the three tiles is the size of a fingernail.|
|Chip location||Glued to the upper left corner of a plate on the aft cross beam of the rover|
|Total names submitted||10,932,295|
|Participating countries||See participation maps countries Y Our states|