Houston, we have a LEGO set! Science editor and writer Maia Weinstock’s "Women of NASA" project, a set of LEGO minifigures that represent famous female scientists, engineers and astronauts, has officially received a green light and will enter production later this year. The set also includes a variety of lab equipment and facilities in which the figures can continue their scientific pursuits.
The "Women of NASA" set initially appeared on LEGO Ideas, a website that offers LEGO fans the opportunity to submit their ideas for new official LEGO sets. Sets that gain an excess of 10,000 votes then go before the company's LEGO Review Board, which then selects which of the ideas will go into mass production and become official LEGO products.
The announcement was made by LEGO Marketing Manager Lise Dydensborg in a short YouTube video on the official LEGO Ideas Blog.
Weinstock's proposal -- which celebrates the work of computer scientist Margaret Hamilton; mathematician and space scientist Katherine Johnson; astronaut, physicist and educator Sally Ride; astronomer Nancy Grace Roman; and astronaut and physician Mae Jemison -- was conceived to "provide an educational building experience to help young ones and adults alike learn about the history of women in STEM."
Ultimately, Weinstock's set beat out stiff competition from 12 other LEGO fan suggestions, including plans for a LEGO Large Hadron Collider and a set dedicated to computer pioneers Ada Lovelace and Charles Babbage (who are also the stars of Sydney Padua's graphic novel The Thrilling Adventures of Lovelace and Babbage).
A proposed LEGO Voltron set is apparently still under consideration by the LEGO Review Board.
According to the LEGO Ideas blog,
As a science editor and writer, with a strong personal interest for space exploration as well as the history of women in science and engineering, Maia Weinstock’s Women of NASA project was a way for her to celebrate accomplished women in the STEM professions. In particular those who’ve made a big impact through their work at NASA. We’re really excited to be able to introduce Maia’s Women of NASA set for its inspirational value as well as build and play experience.
The "Women of NASA" set will now move onto a final development stage, in which the designers and engineers at LEGO establish the pricing, availability and ultimate design of the final finished product. This information will be released sometime in late 2017 or early 2018.