– LEGO introduces new building toys themed around NASA’s Artemis project at the same time as the first mission.
The toy company recently unveiled the first two of its NASA-inspired Lego City space sets with more upcoming specifications. The new rocket launch site and lunar research site are scheduled for launch on March 1, 2022.
After several delays, NASA is now scheduled to launch its Artemis I moon mission in March or April.
“Lego City Space Toy Places comes with feature models inspired by real NASA engines, vehicles and spacecraft, and encourages astronauts to play fantasy, open-end games based on real-life space travel,” LEGO wrote on its website.
The Lego City rocket launch site includes a mobile missile tower and rocket, similar to the Space Launch System (SLS) heavy-lift booster, building its first aircraft on the Artemis I. Lego Rocket, which features the NASA “Meatball” and “Worm” logos. 16.5 inches high and 4 inches wide (42 x 11 cm), similar to a real vehicle
This package includes an observation dome and missile control center and service vehicle and drone. The LEGO minifigers that come with the Rocket Launch Center suite include scientists, technicians and two astronauts, like the four minifigers flying for the LEGO education on the original Artemis I Orion spacecraft.
1,010-piece Rocket Launch Center (Set No. 60351) Sells for $ 149.99.
According to LEGO’s box art, the LEGO City Lunar Research Base was “inspired by NASA’s Artemis base camp concept”. The set includes 786 plastic bricks to build the lunar lander, a domed block with labs, a garage, an airlock and six astronaut minifigures.
The lunar lander resembles SpaceX’s starship human landing system (HLS), which NASA selected to deliver the first astronauts to the moon’s South Pole.
The package also includes components for building the VIPER rover, based on NASA’s Waltiles Investigating Polar Exploration rover, the agency’s first lunar mobile robot. As part of NASA’s Commercial Lunar Payload Services (CLPS) initiative, the actual VIPER is scheduled to be delivered to the moon in late 2023 by the astronaut’s Griffin Lander.
The Lunar research site (Package no. 60350), which is 5 inches high, 15.5 inches wide and 10 inches deep (13 by 40 by 25 cm), is listed for $ 119.99.
The box art for the research site points to another collection coming soon, a Moon Rover. The as yet undeclared package (No. 60348) has been shown to be able to connect directly to the site to facilitate the transfer of astronauts (minifigures) back and forth.
LEGO advertises on its website: “Connect this collection for uninterrupted space fun with others in the Lego City space toy range.”
At least one set in the series is teased in a German toy table, the Lunar Space Station (60349), which is NASA’s gateway, based on the human outpost to be built in lunar orbit.
The Lego City Space Toy Places NASA and LEGO continue to collaborate to promote interest in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) as well as the space agency’s research projects. Earlier LEGO packages celebrated NASA’s Apollo lunar missions, space shuttle and space station projects, and future plans for landing astronauts on Mars.