Proving that LEGO is one of the most epic toys ever invented, three brave Minifigures were launched into space. The distance they traveled was astronomical.
Here are the details and the farthest distance Minifigures have traveled.
Lego and Nasa Collaboration.
It's an unlikely combination: LEGO, the iconic Danish toy company, and NASA.
The two giants of their respective industries — one, a private company known for childhood nostalgia; the other, a government agency focused on research and space travel.
Their goal was to create a joint outreach and educational program designed to inspire children to adventure in STEM fields (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics).
Which Minifigures went to Jupiter?
The three mini-figures launched into space and set on a journey to Jupiter were Juno, Jupiter, and Galileo.
- Juno holds a magnifying glass to signify her search for the truth.
- Jupiter, the Roman god of the sky and thunder, holds a lightning bolt.
- Galileo holds a small globe of Jupiter and a telescope. He made several important discoveries about Jupiter, including the four largest satellites of Jupiter (named the Galilean moons in his honor).
The trio resembles the typical small toys that LEGO sells but are made out of a special material.
What material are they made from?
These mini-figures launched into space are not traditional articulating minifigs available here on Earth.
They are basically the same size as a standard LEGO minifig, but they are made out of space-grade aluminum.
Why these Minifigure characters were chosen
In Greek and Roman mythology, Jupiter drew a veil of clouds around himself to hide his mischief.
From Mount Olympus, Juno was able to peer through the clouds and reveal Jupiter's true nature.
Galileo Galilei was included because of his significant contributions to our understanding of this planet.
On August 5, 2011 at 12:25 pm EDT , the Juno spacecraft launched atop an Atlas V rocket from Cape Canaveral.
The Mission Goal
According to Nasa, Juno's primary goal is to improve our understanding of Jupiter's formation and evolution. The spacecraft will investigate the planet's origins, interior structure, deep atmosphere and magnetosphere.
Juno's study of Jupiter will help to understand the history of our own solar system and provide new insight into how planetary systems form and develop in our galaxy and beyond.
What distance did they travel?
The Minifigures traveled a total distance of 1.7 billion miles or 2.8 million kilometers. This trip took 5 years to complete, arriving on July 4, 2016.
According to Guiness World records, this distance is the current world record for farthest distance traveled by a LEGO minifigure.
This is one of LEGO's biggest records. It is the furthest distance a LEGO Minifigure has travelled. As of 2021, the mission is still ongoing.
Read more about it at the NASA Jet Propulsion LAboratory page.