NASA has had a huge list of collaborators in its 54-year history. The list includes: universities – that have helped NASA advance the study of science, non-profit organizations – that have helped NASA promote education and industries such as aerospace – that have benefited from NASA’s research (as well as NASA’s contracts). NASA decided to mix things up last year when it partnered with Microsoft to create a Mars rover landing simulation for the Xbox. In that new trend of mixing things up, NASA is working with the toy manufacturer, LEGO. NASA and LEGO are holding two design competitions for LEGO builders who can create their vision of space.
In the first competition, builders have to design awhat a NASA’s mission of the near future (2030) might look like (more information here). Potential designs include a space telescope and a Mars lander. This competition is open to builders 16 and older, and the winner will earn NASA memorabilia and a LEGO set along with recognition and acknowledgement on NASA.gov.
The second competition is perhaps more difficult but more exciting. Entrants have to build the aircraft of tomorrow with a LEGO set and they have to write a supporting academic paper. The grand prize winner will receive the opportunity to give a presentation of their project to NASA and LEGO with the winning paper being published by NASA (as long as it’s not too good, otherwise that will be kept secret).
The second competition has two categories: students that are between the ages of 13-18 and participants of any age. The deadline is July 31, 2013 to complete your own LEGO entrant. Anyone can participate, except for residents of several U.S.-sanctioned countries, such as Cuba and North Korea (and for some reason, Quebec – lol). The rules can be found here. Good luck.