AstroGrams reports that its maiden payload has been sent to Firefly Aerospace Inc. (Headquartered in Austin, TX, USA) (Firefly.com) ready for loading onto their rocket. As currently scheduled, the launch will take place later this year from Vandenberg Air Force Base in California, USA.
Charlie Duke, Astronaut, Moonwalker and Lunar Module Pilot, Apollo 16, commented, “Another milestone for AstroGrams has been reached with our payload carrying the dreams and messages from pediatric patients is readied for loading onto the Firefly rocket. Children around the world will be excited to know that their messages will be launched into space in a few months’ time.”
Tom O’Connor, AstroGrams Director, added “All of the team at AstroGrams had a desire last year to make space available to our younger generations, for them to be part of going into space. Today, that vision is a step closer as the premiere payload of AstroGrams is sent to Firefly Aerospace Inc. in Texas, ready for loading onto their rocket. He went on to say, “This is the first of many payloads which we will be sending into space. Our other destinations include sending customer messages to the International Space Station, the Moon, Mars and beyond.”
AstroGrams’ mission is to promote awareness of space. To make people feel part of the space program, by celebrating, commemorating and communicating personally through “launching” their personal AstroGrams. Based in Cape Canaveral, Florida, USA and under the tutelage of Astronaut and Moonwalker Charlie Duke, (Lunar Module Pilot, Apollo 16 and Capcom, Apollo 11), AstroGrams offers people the ability worldwide to inscribe a small metal plaque with their name, and a message and send it into space.
When the message is sent into space, senders receive a personalized “Certificate of Launch”, which includes the message and a Welcome Letter from Charlie Duke. AstroGrams are created via the internet, at AstroGrams.com, (using a smartphone, tablet or pc) from a simple self-service selection menu. Customers can celebrate any person or occasion. A proportion of each payload is made available for free to pediatric patients – to help provide inspiration and hope – for them to look forward to seeing their messages launch on a rocket and go into Space.
Talking about the new company Charlie Duke said: “The reason I helped establish AstroGrams is because it reminds me of when I went to the moon all those years ago. I had taken a photo of my family along with me and written a brief message on the back, which was then left on the moon. It was my desire to make my family part of the mission, so this was my way of taking them with me and recognizing the role they have played in my life. AstroGrams will allow anyone to send their own message into space, enabling them to celebrate, commemorate or communicate an important event or loved one in a truly unique way.”
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Pocket-sized German satellite maker shoots for stars
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