The Beatles are to become the first band to have an audience deep in space as Nasa is to beam one of their songs to The Edge of the universe.

The Fab Four's song Across the Universe will enter the cosmos to mark the 40th anniversary of the day the group recorded the song as well as the 50th anniversary of Nasa's founding and the group's beginnings.

Transmission of the song will be aimed at the North Star, Polaris, which is located 431 lights years away from Earth.

The song, transmitted at 19:00 EST (midnight GMT) on February 4th, will travel through space at a speed of 186,000 miles per second.

Sir Paul McCartney described the plans as "amazing".

"Well done Nasa!" he said in a message to the space agency. "Send my love to the aliens. All the best, Paul."

Lennon's widow, Yoko Ono, added: "I see that this is the beginning of the new age in which we will communicate with billions of planets across the universe."

Two other anniversaries are also being honoured on February 4th; the launch 50 years ago this week of the first US satellite and the founding 45 years ago of the Deep Space Network.

01/02/2008 16:23:00