Over One Lakh Indians Book Ticket For Mars

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"Thanks for submitting your name to travel on our InSight lander!"

Those who submitted their names were provided online "boarding passes" for the mission by NASA.

Around 1,38,899, people from India are Mars-bound.

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Several Indians applied when Nasa called for names for its mission to Mars.

In fact, India ranks the third in the global list with regards to the number of names submitted from a single country.

NASA says it's journey to Mars will span "multiple missions and multiple decades", and "frequent flier" points will help the agency identify individual's participation in this journey. The Indians are part of a group of over 24 lakh people who have registered their names with NASA as part of the United States space agency's InSight (Interior Exploration using Seismic Investigations, Geodesy and Heat Transport) mission.

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The names of all the passengers will be etched on to a silicon wafer microchip using an electron beam to form letters with lines one one-thousandth the diameter of a human hair. The US holds the first spot with 6,76,773 names, while China is on second place with 2,62,752 names.

Space experts have expected this kind of overwhelming response from the USA, since it's a NASA mission. India stands at number three with over one lakh names.

Andrew Good from NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory told The Times Of India that they are "no longer accepting submissions", as the deadline was last week. Slated for landing near the Mars equator on November 26, 2018, it is a 720-day mission, which will gather data on the Martian interior by monitoring Marsquakes.

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Further, the mission is dedicated to understanding about the formation and evolution of rocky planets, including Earth.

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