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22 March 2021: To celebrate the launch of the new LEGO® NASA Space Shuttle Discovery, the LEGO Group spoke exclusively to Former NASA Astronaut Dr. Kathy Sullivan to reveal details of her experience onboard the original NASA STS-31 mission and how the real-life space shuttle compares to the LEGO model’s detailed reimagination of the spacecraft and famous Hubble Space Telescope.
Filmed at COSI (Center of Science and Industry), the fascinating interview, which is now available on lego.com/gobeyond, Dr. Kathy Sullivan reveals details about the incredible mission, which launched the Hubble Space Telescope into the cosmos – enabling NASA, and scientists around the world, to explore more of the universe than ever before. The interview also delved into Dr. Sullivan’s thoughts on encouraging more young people into STEM careers and the future of space exploration.
The new LEGO NASA Space Shuttle Discovery, which was developed in collaboration with NASA, is a complex 2,354 piece build that pays homage to this pioneering moment in space history and marks the 40th anniversary since the first Space Shuttle flight on 12th of April 1981. The set, aimed at adults, features the Discovery orbiter with functional landing gear, payload bay doors, elevons and rudder; and the famous Hubble Space Telescope, which can either be folded and contained within the payload bay or expanded with solar array and displayed separately. Both also come with a display plaque which features key data from the mission.
Commenting on the set, Dr. Kathy Sullivan said, “I was thrilled to see the space shuttle in LEGO form, and was very impressed by the amount of intricate detail they have managed to recreate from the module where we used to sleep and eat through to what we called the “milk stalls” on the telescope. Looking at the model, it was great to reminisce about my experiences in space launching the telescope for the first time. Hubble is definitely the highlight of my career. This LEGO model is a great way for LEGO builders and space fans alike to get excited about space travel and learn more about the famous mission in a fun and engaging way.”
Just over 30 years on from the original mission, The LEGO Group wanted to delve deeper into people’s passions for space to really uncover what they think of the great beyond. Including, what the next 30 years could hold, the future of space travel and if there really is life on mars.
Key findings include:
- 72% of people label Space exploration as being “essential”
- Finding out more about the universe and making scientific discoveries listed as the number one reason people believe we should travel to Space, with understanding more about Earth taking second spot
- 24% of people believe that we will find new planets and 13% think we will find alien life in the next 30 years
- 71% of people believe there is life on other planets
- Over half (52%) think there will be space tourism in the next 30 years. With 32% thinking it will involve very expensive and exclusive journeys into the atmosphere
- 68% would travel to space if invited
Dr. Kathy Sullivan gave her expert view on the future of space exploration to LEGO, including: “the biggest barriers to space tourism in the next 30 years is the safety and costs elements, if we can break through these the general public really could take a trip to space in the future.”
As part of the wider LEGO Go beyond campaign, that kicks off with this product launch, space and LEGO fans alike can head to lego.com/gobeyond to watch the interview and find out more about the original mission, discover more about the LEGO NASA Space Shuttle Discovery set and access some great online space learning tools from LEGO Education.
In addition, LEGO VIPs can watch a full-length interview with former NASA Astronaut Dr. Kathy Sullivan where she discusses more details from the original mission, plus what travelling to space is really like. VIPs will be able to purchase an exclusive item with their points; a Ulysses Space Probe, available for 1,800 VIP Points, which the Space Shuttle Discovery launched in 1990 on a mission to scan the Sun. Limited stocks available.
LEGO® NASA Space Shuttle Discovery is on sale 1st April from LEGO.com and LEGO Retail stores.
LEGO® NASA Discovery Space Shuttle (10283)
- Age – 18+
- Model measures: Height: 21.78cm, Width: 34.60cm, Length: 55.46cm
- 2,354 pieces
- The set features both the Discovery orbiter with functional landing gear, payload bay doors, elevons and rudder.
- The Hubble Telescope can be folded and contained within the payload bay or expanded with its solar array and displayed separately.
- The model comes with two stands and plaques, for both the orbiter and the Hubble Telescope.
- Price: 179,99 EUR/199,99 USD/169.99 GBP
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