Lego’s releasing set #21104, a replica of the Curiosity rover currently terrorizing Martians as it pokes, prods, and vaporizes the surface with its laser beam while they do their best to avoid its cameras 😉 . It’s available on January 1st for $30 from the Lego Store. What’s really cool though is that this set started life as a fan-designed model over at Cuusoo and was designed by one of the mechanical engineers who worked on the actual rover.
What would it cost to fly to, and live on, Mars? Check out this cool infographic from SmartPlanet for the answer. The bottom line is it’s a lot of money, but is feasible, especially if you send more than one person (economies of scale kick in). It’s pretty cool to think that I might see this in my lifetime.
NASA has just issued a press release where they state that the Curiosity rover has found PLASTIC on Mars! It’s in the form of small, eighth inch diameter plastic spheres, of a type of plastic that, as far as we know at least, can only be formed using petrochemicals. This suggests there could possibly be a source of oil on Mars…and the oil that would produce this sort of plastic is only known to come from ancient fossilized organic materials like zooplankton and algae. So this raises all sorts of questions…where did the oil come from…does that mean there was once life on Mars…and how was it turned into plastic? It’s amazing what we’re learning from one solitary robot cruising the surface of Mars with limited scientific capability…there’s so much more to learn from that planet!
UPDATE: well that’s embarrassing…it looks like I fell for a hoax, this story is not true.