Your kiddo might just get a chance to name the next Mars rover. NASA recently announced the selection of two partner organizations, Battelle Education and Future Engineers, to run its nationwide K-12 naming contest!

The Mars 2020 “Name the Rover” contest will open to students in kindergarten through grade 12 next fall (fall of 2019). The 2,300-pound rover is set to launch July 2020 with a touch down date on the Martian surface of February 2021. The rover will explore the planet’s surface, collect samples and look for signs of past microbial life.

George Tahu, Mars 2020 program executive in NASA’s Planetary Science Division at the agency’s Headquarters in Washington said in a press release, “Contests like this present excellent opportunities to invite young students and educators to be a part of this journey to understand the possibilities for life beyond Earth and to advance new capabilities in exploration technology.”

If you’re just as much of a space enthusiast as your child—you’re in luck! NASA is looking for volunteer judges to review the entries!

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—Erica Loop

Featured photo: Courtesy of NASA

 

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