LEGO travels to jupiter onboard space probe LEGO travels to jupiter onboard space probe
aug 04, 2011

LEGO travels to jupiter onboard space probe

three LEGO figurines– italian astronomer galileo galilei and the two roman gods jupiter and juno– are headed for a five-year mission to jupiter

three LEGO figurines are traveling to jupiter, affixed to the space probe ‘juno’. the models represent the italian astronomer galileo galilei, the roman god jupiter, and the roman goddess juno

created by LEGO on a special commission from NASA, the three figures are composed of aluminum, created at a cost of about 5,000 USD each. special manufacturing was required to ensure that the figurines do not interfere with the spacecraft’s sensitive measurements and instruments.

‘juno’ is expected to arrive on jupiter in july of 2016, where the solar-powered probe will collect information about the planet, its moons, and atmosphere over the course of one year. it is scheduled to launch aboard the unmanned ‘atlas V’ rocket at 11:40 AM EDT on august 5th.

galileo carries a telescope and a model of the planet jupiter

jupiter carries a lightning bolt

juno carries a magnifying glass

the figurines onboard the ‘juno’ space probe

rendering of the ‘atlas V’ rocket, which carries the ‘juno’ space probe with the figurines onboard

via wired

  • Yup, sure sign of a bankrupt culture.
    If I was an alien coming across this in the debris of deep space, I would first of all have to assume that these were very important relics from the people that made them… If I was smart I might then assume that they are not anatomically correct, but perhaps a friendly representation of their leaders.
    A lady-boy and two old geezers………
    Most def. a war-like people looking for trouble, but with primitive weapons and a frying pan.
    And Baldy’s stud-feature on his bonce? Beats me, maybe that’s for copulating with whoever they are looking for in outer space; he seems up for it, and he’ll let you play with his ball.
    Who are the idiots who commission these things?

    mackenzie collins says:
  • This is very cool! Perhaps if extraterrestrial life comes across this probe they will see the greatest creation of all time, LEGOs!!

    Rich says:
  • very funny, cute 🙂

    Satriyo says:
  • For a country that recently had to borrow even more money so it wouldn’t implode… It is spending its time, money and energy making limited edition lego men to send into space?

    Dan says:
  • dumb

    Simon says:
  • That makes think that maybe many of the antiquity figures that are discoverd around the world and are taken as religious or another serious themes, were possibly only toys… : )

    A says:
  • Proof that not only are politicians completely out of touch with the real World: NASA space scientists are too. Sure, they look cute, but what are they supposed to represent or add to the mission? I like to comments from mackenzie collins and “A” … makes you wonder, doesn’t it?

    robert_t says:
  • They should take playmobil into the endless space. And as far as bankrupt culture goes, a culture that doesn’t allow these playful gestures sounds more like a bankrupt culture to me. One that takes itself too serious. Bankruptcy is not caused by taking an interest in heaven, but by too much worldlyness. The question is if the exploration of heaven is a conquest to be undertaken with moneyconsuming rockets based on the human senses, rather then being a yourney in the human spirit based on metaphysical notions and feelings. Jesus didn’t need rockets, and he went to the sun and beyond.

    Sparky says:
  • the new barbie space commander was on the list first.

    americansarestupid says:
  • Just goes to show you that NASA’s time has come and gone. Or perhaps this is their new ‘manned’ space program?

    five thousand dollars each? special manufacturing processes to avoid interference? give us a break. Most of the spacecraft is made of aluminum.

    This is just a plain waste.

    dlevartt says:
  • ,000 for the three little guys?
    And NASA is short on money? Hmmm…
    As for the bit about special manufacture so they wouldn’t interfere with the probe, er, how about making them out of plastic, just like a normal terrestrial Lego minifigure?
    I do like ’em though and believe that a society devoid of humour and whimsy is a dead one. But still, k?!

    Lombax says:
  • 15k for the three little guys?
    And NASA is short on money? Hmmm…
    As for the bit about special manufacture so they wouldn’t interfere with the probe, er, how about making them out of plastic, just like a normal terrestrial Lego minifigure?
    I do like ’em though and believe that a society devoid of humour and whimsy is a dead one. But still, 15k?!

    Lombax says:
  • These will pay for themselves many times over if auctioned upon return. pretty cool.

    funkbot88 says:
  • This is one the most moronic comments sections I have ever read.

    The purpose of casting and sending the figures into space is about marketing, bringing attention to the program and it’s mission. People like Lego so NASA attaches a few to a probe. It gets more attention from the press and more attention kids who develop an interest in the space program.

    Also, I don’t believe any of you are engineers with any understanding of the instruments on board. This a multi-million dollar probe that is 900 million miles from Earth if something goes wrong there is no way to fix it. So every conceivable thing has to be considered.

    So in terms of an engineering exercise and as a public relations
    exercise this has so far been successful and a bargain as well.

    Let's just move back into caves. says:
  • they won’t be returning, those probes just crash into the planet afterwards.

    Anonymous says:

have something to add? share your thoughts in our comments section below.

comments policy
LOG IN
designboom's comment policy guidelines
generally speaking, if we publish something, it's because we're genuinely interested in the subject. we hope you'll share this interest and if you know even more about it, please share! our goal in the discussion threads is to have good conversation and we prefer constructive opinions. we and our readers have fun with entertaining ones. designboom welcomes alerts about typos, incorrect names, and the like.
the correction is at the discretion of the post editor and may not happen immediately.

what if you disagree with what we or another commenter has to say?
let's hear it! but please understand that offensive, inappropriate, or just plain annoying comments may be deleted or shortened.

- please do not make racist, sexist, anti-semitic, homophobic or otherwise offensive comments.
- please don't personally insult the writers or your fellow commenters.
- please avoid using offensive words, replacing a few letters with asterisks is not a valid workaround.
- please don't include your website or e-mail address in your comments for the purpose of self-promotion.
- please respect jury verdicts and do not discuss offensively on the competition results
(there is only one fist prize, and designboom usually asks renown professionals to help us to promote talent.
in addition to the awarded designs, we do feel that almost all deserve our attention, that is why we publish
the best 100-200 entries too.)

a link is allowed in comments as long as they add value in the form of information, images, humor, etc. (links to the front page of your personal blog or website are not okay). unwelcome links (to commercial products or services of others, offensive material etc. ) will be redacted. and, ... yes, spam gets banned. no, we do not post fake comments.

technology news