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NASA beams one lucky Earthling’s tweet into space

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It’s a tweet that’s out of this world…literally.

NASA on Tuesday sent the message to the Voyager 1 out into interstellar space, in honor of the spacecraft’s 40th anniversary. What was the message?

“We offer friendship across the stars. You are not alone.”

The tweet was chosen by public vote after NASA launched a contest to send a 140-character message beyond our solar system, using the #MessageToVoyager hashtag. The lucky winner is Oliver, who uses the Twitter handle @Asperger_Nerd and describes himself as a “Dude with Asperger’s. Earth Ambassador.”

Now his message will be one of the first things to greet any extraterrestrials who stumble across the Voyager.

He was pretty excited, to say the least.

William Shatner, who played Captain Kirk in “Star Trek,” had the honor of sending the message Tuesday, to commemorate the day, Sept. 5, 1977, when NASA first launched Voyager 1 into space to explore far-away planets Jupiter and Saturn — work it shared with its twin, Voyager 2.

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Voyager 1 hit several space milestones — for example, it became the first spacecraft to discover active volcanoes beyond Earth (on Jupiter’s moon Io) and the first spacecraft to detect lightning on a planet other than Earth (Jupiter).

When the spacecraft was finished exploring those planets, it kept going out into space. On Aug. 25, 2012 it crossed over into interstellar space (the space between the stars). It became the first human-made object to leave the heliosphere (the magnetic bubble separating our solar system from the rest of the galaxy). Now Voyager one is the farthest man-made object from the Earth.

Along with @Asperger_Nerd’s tweet, Voyager 1 carries with it a collection of pictures, sounds and music as a greeting to any extraterrestrial life it may encounter. The message is called the “Golden Record,” and is carried on a phonograph record — a 12-inch gold-plated copper disc.

And Voyager 1 will continue floating out there in interstellar space, holding its small snapshot of life on Earth, for billions of years after it stops communicating with NASA.

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Photo: A handout photo released by the European Space Agency on April 20, 2017 shows an image displaying the galaxies NGC 4302 seen edge-on and NGC 4298, both located 55 million light-years away. (AFP Photo/ NASA/ESA/HUBBLE/M. Mutchler/Getty Images)

Tags: nasa, twitter

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