This Friday, NASA will launch an Atlas V rocket that will be contain a very special payload - three secret Lego minifigs. "Not only will the rocket be carrying Juno, a space probe that is being sent to Jupiter to study the fifth planet from the Sun, but there will be a few unique stowaways. The figures spent $15,000 carving these 1.5-inch tall figures out of solid blocks of aluminum to make sure that they don't cause the spacecraft to crash into Jupiter by accident. The beardy guy with the lightning bolt on the left there is Jupiter himself, next to him is his wife (and, uh, sister) Juno holding a magnifying glass, and rounding out the trio is Galileo, who's got a model of Jupiter in one hand and a telescope in the other. It is scheduled to arrive at Jupiter in 2016, where it will spend a year orbiting the gas giant, and and crash into the planet’s surface."
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