A billboard that can be seen by almost the entire population of the world, for almost every night of the year would be an advertiser’s dream. And that’s how some companies are looking at the moon. In a move Don Draper wishes he thought of, one Japanese beverage company announced this week, The Verge reports, that they would be creating the first luanr advertising campaign.
The makers of Pocari Sweat, a sports drink, will send a titanium canister (branded of course, with the Pocari Sweat label) to the moon’s surface. Inside the canister will be powdered Pocari Sweat, and the hopes and dreams of children.
The company is asking that children (and other people with a smartphone) submit their dreams to be engraved on plates that will be paced inside the "Dream Capsule" (a.k.a. a giant soda can) and sent to the moon. Participants are expected to receive a key that can open the capsule.
You know, for when you become an astronaut when you grow up.
From the project’s website:
We created the DREAM RING as a key to open the capsule that will fly to the moon with your dreams. When you touch down on the moon someday, use your DREAM RING to open the capsule to reencounter your dreams from today. We will be overjoyed if you celebrated this by drinking the included POCARI SWEAT powder by mixing it with the moon’s own water.
It’s not immediately clear that the canister will be visible from Earth (unlike a slightly more outrageous advertising scheme from a few years ago). The moon is, after all, a very large place.
There’s another aspect to this mission too. The canister will blast off in October 2015 on one of SpaceX’s Falcon 9 rockets. But the lander is designed by a company called Astrobotic Technology. The Verge explains:
Pittsburgh-based Astrobotic Technology has more important reasons to be up on the moon than to leave a beverage can on its face. The company is angling to win Google's Lunar X prize, a $20-million bounty for the first company to land a device on the moon that can both travel 500 meters on the surface and transmit high-definition pictures back to Earth. Astrobotic's deal with Otsuka will provide them with funds to achieve this goal — the company reportedly charges upwards of half a million dollars for lunar delivery — but the mission to drop a can is somewhat ironic: Astrobotic is a company that develops technologies for clearing space trash.
Maybe on a return mission, they’ll recycle the canister?