Elizabeth Norman was approached by the United Launch Alliance (ULA) after being impressed by the launch of her homemade amateur rocket that soared 30ft into the air.
Elizabeth Norman has always loved space and everything related to it. This passion of hers was noted by the world’s leading space pioneers who were also impressed with the projects and achievements of the seven-year-old. Now, she's been given the opportunity to become the first kid ever to be able to send an object up to the moon. The young aspiring astronaut has always dreamed big. Her ambitious rocket launch project caught the attention of the United Launch Alliance (ULA) who decided to send up an object of Elizabeth's choice up to the moon in their upcoming mission.
The Leicester, England, resident watched the landing of NASA’s Perseverance Rover on Mars last year and was soon obsessed with space. She then decided to build her own rocket modeled after the Vulcan Centaur, a rocket being developed by the ULA. She then launched the seven-foot cardboard rocket from her backyard in January this year, reported the Daily Mail. Her homemade amateur rocket soared 30ft into the air and impressed the makers of the real Vulcan Centaur. They reached out to her and offered to send an item of her choice in their first lunar time capsule set to be launched later this year.
Elizabeth has decided to send a sticker of her space blog, "Astro Liz" in the time capsule. She happens to be one of the few people from all over the world asked to include a personal item on the first-ever mission of its kind. "I can’t wait to see a video of the capsule with my sticker on the moon taken by the lunar lander," she said, according to Good News Network. Her family has been invited to the rocket launch that will take place in Florida at the end of 2021. Elizabeth is a Student Space Ambassador with the Mars Generation, NASA Social alumni, Planetary Society member, and contributing member of the Citizen Science Association. All her efforts have already paid off.
The little girl's mom, Jennifer Norman said, "None of us could believe it when we found out she would have the opportunity to make her mark on the Moon. For her to be included in such a historic moment is incredible and has shown anything is possible—her confidence and ambition have grown so much since she found out." She is already doing her own astronaut’s physical training routine to prepare for a future in space. Maybe one day she will get to see her sticker in person. She has also just completed a five-week NASA program where she designed and carried out her own virtual mission to Mars.
Additionally, the young girl has also learned about robotics and managed to build a bionic arm. Tory Bruno, the CEO of ULA, and lunar lander manufacturer Astrobotic noticed her work. He even witnessed her home rocket launch. Bruno reached out to her and asked her if she wanted to be a part of the real launch of Astrobotic’s Peregrine lunar lander on board ULA’s Vulcan Centaur. "Astrobotic is making my space dreams come true and I’m so excited to watch the launch… I love science and space because there is so much to learn and I love exploring and doing experiments," Elizabeth said. Talking about her goals she said, "To walk on the moon and to explore the highest mountain on Mars."
Her mother added, according to Metro UK, "As parents, we are so inspired by Elizabeth’s dedication and passion and we truly believe she will go to space one day – at just seven years old, she is already taking real steps to achieve that dream. But part of what makes her so incredible is she doesn’t realize just how special this all is – not only is it a huge step towards her dream but it’s also a historic moment for space travel and it’s so exciting that she can be a part of it." She has learned at a young age that the sky is the limit for dreamers.