Friday, October 10, 2014

Sign Up to Send Your Name Into Space

For those of you bitten by the space bug, NASA is offering people the chance to submit their names to be flown on the upcoming ETF-1 experimental test flight of their Orion spacecraft, which will be their next-generation manned space vehicle intended to travel beyond Earth orbit:

Apparently, over 26000 Indians have signed up for this opportunity:

It would be nice if ISRO could borrow a page from NASA's book, and similarly offer Indians and others the chance to fly their names on future Indian spaceflights. After all, in just a matter of weeks ISRO will similarly be launching its long-awaited next-generation GSLV Mk-III rocket on its maiden experimental test flight mission, LVM3-X1.

It wouldn't take much effort to record people's names onto a tiny chip to send up with the vehicle, compared to all the well-wishers and support it would garner. NASA excels at this kind of social outreach, and ISRO should also try some of these things in order to earn more goodwill for itself.

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