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Galaxy Cat? A Man Spent 3.5 Lakh to Get the Ashes of His Dead Cat 'Pikachu' Sent To Space

Oregon resident Stunt Munt has used personal savings to buy a $5,000 space ticket for the deceased cat 'Pikachu' from Celestis, a company that offers "Earth orbit pet launch service," as one of four different options as pet memorial spaceflights.

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Updated:April 29, 2019, 5:02 PM IST
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Galaxy Cat? A Man Spent 3.5 Lakh to Get the Ashes of His Dead Cat 'Pikachu' Sent To Space
Oregon resident Stunt Munt has used personal savings to buy a $5,000 space ticket for the deceased cat 'Pikachu' from Celestis, a company that offers "Earth orbit pet launch service," as one of four different options as pet memorial spaceflights.
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A man has planned a grand send-off for his beloved cat by launching its cremated remains into space.

Oregon resident Stunt Munt has used personal savings to buy a $5,000 space ticket for the deceased cat 'Pikachu' from Celestis, a company that offers "Earth orbit pet launch service," as one of four different options as pet memorial spaceflights.

A fundraising campaign he launched about two months ago could only raise $1,535 of the required $5,000, prompting Munt to spend his personal savings to buy the space ticket.

"I have already signed the contract and just recently paid in full for the service," he told space.com. "While I continue to accept donations for those who wish to be a part of this tribute, fundraising is not a primary goal for me. My dream is coming true, regardless of any additional donations, and I am currently awaiting an assigned slot on a future launch."

"I wanted Pikachu to be the first, continue his legacy as an explorer and show the world that a cat is just as worthy as a dog of a special tribute," Munt said.

"Pikachu will have a final send-off like no cat has ever had before," Steve Munt, Pikachu's owner, had written on a GoFundMe page.

Pikachu’s remains will hitch a ride to space as a small secondary payload on a satellite launch sometime in the next 18 months, thanks to Celestis which also offers memorial spaceflights for humans.

A description of the service on celestispets.com states that the container of the pet's ashes will be "placed in Earth orbit where it remains until it reenters the atmosphere, harmlessly vaporizing like a shooting star in final tribute."

Pikachu will be the first cremated cat to go into space. The first cat in space was a French stray named Felicette, who launched on a Véronique AG1 rocket in 1963 and returned to Earth alive after her suborbital flight.

Celestis has already launched the remains of two dogs, named Apollo and Laika, since it began offering the service 2014.

"Pikachu is a hero, and I am honouring him as such," Munt said.

"Space resonated with me as I was a child of the Space Age. Explorer 1 was launched on my first birthday. The first chimp in space was launched on my fourth birthday. I was glued in front of the TV for every space launch I could watch, [and] I will be able to attend Pikachu's launch."

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