Seattle-based Planetary Resources has launched an online fundraising campaign on the popular website kickstarter in hopes of putting a telescope in space that anyone can access.
Known as the ARKYD, the telescope is 16 inches long and 2 feet wide and weighs roughly 33 pounds. It features a large camera that can take high-resolution images of objects in space and an external video screen that can broadcast images uploaded by users.
The telescope is being funded by Planetary Resources, but the company needs your help to launch it into orbit.
A variety of pledge options are being offered to help raise the funds. The most popular option, associated with a $25 pledge, lets backers upload any image (selfies encouraged) to be broadcast on the telescope’s screen and recorded by an external camera. The photo will then be emailed to you and shared with other viewers.
At the time this article was published, a total of 4,468 backers had pledged more than $480,000, nearly halfway to the campaign’s fundraising goal of $1 million.
Partnering with the Museum of Flight, Planetary Resources hopes to use the project to further space education for K-12 students.
To learn more about the project and see what pledge options are available, visit the Planetary Resources kickstarter page here.