So how'd you like to name your own rocket? And then watch it go into space to take pictures of our planet live on www.nasa.gov this Sunday.
That's exactly what Patrick O'Connor will be doing when the Pegasus rocket named Mercator is launched for a mapping mission in space. The Chicago man's name was chosen as part of contest that Adler and NBC 5 put together this month.
Gerardus Mercator was Flemish geographer who lived in Germany. He invented the Mercator projection of maps of the globe.
O'Connor says he he's pretty sure he's the first member of the general public to name one of their rockets.
Called the Interstellar Boundary Explorer or IBEX, the spacecraft will conduct extremely high-altitude orbits above Earth to investigate and capture images of processes taking place at the farthest reaches of the solar system. Known as the interstellar boundary, this region marks where the solar system meets interstellar space.