It may be years before man (or woman) sets foot on Mars but NASA is giving the public an opportunity to send their name — stencilled on chips — with NASA’s Mars 2020 rover.

Scheduled to launch as early as July 2020 from Cape Canaveral in Florida, the spacecraft is expected to touch down on the red planet in February 2021.

Weighing more than 2,300 pounds (1,000 kilograms), the rover, a robotic scientist, will search for signs of past microbial life, characterise the planet’s climate and geology, collect samples for future return to Earth, and pave the way for human exploration of the planet.

“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 (SMD).

“It’s an exciting time for NASA, as we embark on this voyage to answer profound questions about our neighbouring planet, and even the origins of life itself.”

The opportunity to send your name to Mars comes with a souvenir boarding pass for you to print off.

Currently there are more than 2 million names registered with 44,735 of those from the UK.

You have until 30th September to add your name to the list and obtain a souvenir boarding pass to Mars here.

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