If you're stuck for a Christmas gift for that someone special then Japan's space agency, JAXA , could just have the perfect solution and - even better - it's completely free. For the bargain price of zero yen, JAXA will fly your choice of message to the moon on a satellite.

Between now and the end of January JAXA is accepting online applications through its US partner, The Planetary Society, for the " Wish Upon the Moon " campaign.

Anyone submitting messages in that period, no matter where in the world they live, will find a spot on Japan's Selene mission, which will launch next summer.

The Selene project involves sending three separate spacecraft to the moon to map its surface and gravity field. JAXA anticipates the mission being the first step on the road to an eventual manned moon mission in co-operation with NASA and other partners.

When those astronauts do get there, why not make sure they find a record of your Christmas generosity from 2006? J Mark Lytle