People have long looked up at the Moon and imagined mankind on its face. Before the living colonizes the moon with proposed lunar bases, the satellite will belong to the dead. NASA plans to send cremated human remains to the Moon starting in 2021.
According to Space.com, NASA will transport more than a dozen capsules that contain human remains and DNA to space. The organization partnered with the Texas-based memorial firm Celestis for the mission. The firm will provide the DNA and remains for the Luna 2 or the “Tranquility Flight” mission. NASA plans to launch the flight in July 20201 to a region of the satellite called Lacus Mortis.
“The Celestis memorial capsules … will remain on the Moon as a permanent tribute to the intrepid souls who never stopped reaching for the stars,” the firm wrote. “Each time you view the Moon you’ll know your loved one is in a place few have ever gone.”
Celestis Will Send Human Remains to the Moon
The capsules, among other things, will be loaded upon the Peregrine Mission One lander during the mission. The company Astrobotic is building moon landers to be used in missions by NASA. The launch will take place in Cape Canaveral, Florida. A United Launch Alliance Vulcan Centaur rocket will also be used in the mission.
“Our Luna Service is among the most popular, as it affords families and friends the permanence of an off-planet service and provides a constant reminder in the night sky of a loved one’s final resting place,” Celestis co-founder and CEO Charles Chafer said.
This will be the second time Celestis has launched human remains to the Moon. In 1998, the company sent the remains of astrogeologist Eugene Shoemaker to the lunar surface.
“2001: A Space Odyssey” writer Arthur C. Clark and lunar geologist Mareta West will be among the dozen remains sent to rest among the stars.