SAN FRANCISCO -- It's an idea that seems out of this world.
Elysium Space, a startup company in San Francisco that was founded in 2013, is teaming up with a lunar logistics company in Pittsburgh to honor deceased family members by sending their ashes to the moon, reports CBS San Francisco.
Elysium Space describes itself as, "A unique team of space and funeral experts, combining experience from major NASA space missions and deep-rooted funeral profession knowledge."
Elysium Space explains on its website that its name comes from the Greek mythology afterlife realm: Elysium, where the righteous and the heroic remain after death, to live a blessed and happy life.
CBS San Francisco reports that Elysium Space already offers a Milky Way and Shooting Star Memorial option, which sends ashes into a brief orbit before returning to Earth as a bright streak across the atmosphere.
The first Lunar Memorial, as it's called, will be for the mother of Steven Jenks, a U.S. Army Infantry Soldier from Tennessee. While Jenks was deployed to Iraq he would receive letters from his mother signed, "No matter how lonely you feel and how far you are, always look at the Moon and know I am with you. I love you to the Moon and back."
Jenks mother died from lunch cancer reports CBS San Francisco. Following her death he approached the Pittsburgh-based company Astrobotic Technology. According its website, Astrobotic Technology currently flies hardware systems into space for companies, governments, and universities. Jenks asked the company to send his mother's ashes to the moon as a unique way to keep her memory alive.
"It's a privilege to provide an experience that will allow families to commemorate and honor loved ones by directly connecting them with the Moon in the night sky," said John Thornton, CEO of Astrobotic Technology in a press release.
It does come at a hefty price though.
The service costs $11,950, or $9,950 for the first 50 participants. Family member's remains are placed into personalized capsules and then will then be delivered to the moon's surface by Astrobotic's Griffin lander, which will hitch a ride on the SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket.
CBS San Francisco reports that the companies got permission to land ashes on the moon from Federal Aviation Administration's Office of Commercial Space Transportation.
"Offering this exceptional tribute within the reach of most families is an important part of this new chapter opening for our civilization," said Thomas Civeit, founder and CEO of Elysium Space.