A British consortium has revealed plans to launch a crowdfunded robot mission to the moon, and is offering donors the chance to plant their DNA on the lunar surface.
The Lunar Mission One consortium hopes to fund the first stage of its mission by raising £600,000 (€748,000, $936,000) via the crowd funding platform Kickstarter over the next four weeks. It hopes to augment this funding in the future with £500m in public donations.
Lunar Mission One claims that, in exchange for donating to the project, which has received the endorsement of a range of well-known scientists, people will receive photos and texts from the robot during its journey to the Moon.
The consortium will also let donors include their DNA in a time capsule which will be buried underneath the moon's surface. They claim the time capsule could survive for one billion years.
"Anyone in the world will be able to get involved for as little as just a few pounds," said David Iron, the leader of the project.
"Lunar Mission One will make a huge contribution to our understanding of the origins of our planet and the Moon."
The project was set up after governments pared back on science funding and made it difficult for space millions to gain state investment.
Lunar Mission One say the project is aimed at educating and replicating the inspiration and passion for science that the Apollo Moon landings did in the 1960s and 1970s.
The robotic probe is intended to survey and analyse the Moon's south pole to see if a human base can be set up in the future.