Send your name to space on UA-led asteroid mission - Tucson News Now

Send your name to space on UA-led asteroid mission

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TUCSON, AZ (Tucson News Now) -

The University of Arizona is leading a $1 billion project to land an unmanned craft on an asteroid that might pose a threat to earth.

The school is heading a project called OSIRIS-REx that is scheduled for a September 2016 launch from Cape Canaveral in Florida.

According to the project's mission, the unmanned craft is slated to bring back a sample of asteroid Bennu, which is a third of a mile in diameter.

Scientists said if Bennu hit the earth, it would gouge a crater four miles wide and cause widespread damage.

NASA's OSIRIS-REx mission and The Planetary Society invite people around the world to submit their names to be etched onto a microchip that will be aboard the spacecraft.

"Through this campaign, we'll put your name aboard a spacecraft that will travel to an asteroid and back, making you an active participant in humankind's exploration of the solar system. How cool does that sound?" The Planetary Society CEO Bill Nye stated in a news release. "Our mission is to engage the citizens of Earth in space exploration and the Messages to Bennu! campaign fits right in with this belief."

To submit your name to the Messages to Bennu! campaign, visit The campaign will run until Sept. 30.

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