NASA mailed me this a week ago:
On Monday, Nov. 26, 2018, just before noon PT (3 p.m. ET; 2000 UTC/GMT), NASA’s InSight mission will land on Mars! The spacecraft will plunge through the thin Martian atmosphere, heatshield first, and use a parachute to slow down. Then, it will fire its retro rockets to slowly descend to the surface.
Yours is among 2.4 million names that will be on Mars when InSight touches down. Once on the surface, InSight will study the deep interior of Mars to advance our understanding of the early history of all rocky planets, including Earth.NASA
Actually, some time back, I saw a post from NASA on my Instagram feed. It said that the Insight Mission which is going to land on Mars in November 2018 will carry names of people who sign up via a form. Just the names, no DNA or anything. They don’t want to contaminate Mars (further). I had signed up without giving another thought. And the day is here!
Today (tonight), hopefully, my name, along with 2.4 million others will land on Mars. To put in percentage, out of 7 odd billion people, only
0.03% of people would have their names landing on Mars tonight. I am not joking. Can you imagine how exciting this actually is? Although the mission is not about that. But having your name on a different planet is a feat in itself, right?
But on a serious note, after Curiosity this would be the first mission which actually lands on the Martian surface.
Check out a very detailed and entertaining post by Oatmeal about the Insight mission here: http://theoatmeal.com/comics/insight
Read about the complete mission here: https://mars.nasa.gov/news/8384/nasa-brings-mars-landing-to-viewers-everywhere/?site=insight&utm_source=iContact&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=nasa-mars-outreach&utm_content=mars20181119