LEGO Lunar Poster is a 2360-piece DIY wall-art that’s perfect for space enthusiasts

A LEGO Ideas MOC that’s literally ‘out of this world’!

Since pretty much the beginning of time, we’ve been obsessed with the moon. It’s our closest neighbor, influences tides, illuminates our nights, and provides a stunning way to measure the passing of a year, with many cultures relying on a lunar calendar as opposed to a solar one. There’s no denying how important the moon is to humanity, and although there’s probably a very tiny overlap between astronomy geeks and LEGO nerds, the Lego Art space poster “The Moon: Earth’s Companion” sits rather firmly in that tiny overlap. Built with 2360 LEGO bricks, this fan-made creation celebrates the beauty and mystery of the Moon. At its center is a highly detailed, brick-built Moon, complete with unique craters and terrain features that showcase the Moon’s striking geology. The focal point of this creation… a meticulously crafted Moon constructed entirely out of LEGO Art bricks. The level of detail is impressive, with labeled craters and mountains accurately representing the unique geology of our celestial neighbor.

Designer: SharkyBricks

Looking pretty much like a printed poster, however, with the beauty of being three-dimensional, this fan-made MOC comes with a stunning amount of attention to detail. Beyond just the moon itself, the poster contains all sorts of nuggets of information, from a panoramic gallery of the moon phases to a tiny diorama of what the earth looks like from the surface of the moon. You’ve got a tiny information plate on the bottom left, and a scale bar on the bottom right, giving you a size reference in miles (although don’t expect it to be absolutely accurate).

The MOC doesn’t use standard LEGO or Technic bricks, but instead uses bricks from the LEGO Art kit, which are perfect for artistic representations. The tiny bricks aren’t designed to serve structural purposes, but instead are shaped (and are meant to be treated) as pixels, allowing you to build a 2D representation of artwork, with an optional 3D relief twist.

The entire build uses around 2360 pieces and roughly measures 15.5 inches in width, and 20.2 inches in height, making it a little smaller than your standard A2-size poster. It makes for the perfect DIY wall art for any space enthusiast, capturing the beauty of our closest cosmic neighbor in as much realistic detail as a LEGO brick can provide. Just don’t try taking photos of this moon with your Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra camera!

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Japanese company brings astronomically expensive space tourism within reach of the common masses

We’ve still got some time to go before commercial space tourism goes mainstream, and the early birds taking up the initiative will reap the maximum benefit of client accusation.

SpaceX, Blue Origin and Virgin Galactic have already planted a firm foot in the space tourism industry, but their packages are only within reach of the ultra-rich. Not to forget the amount of training and acclimatization it’ll require to stamp the ticket beyond the stratosphere.

Designer: Iwaya Giken

Ambitious start-up Iwaya Giken, based in Sapporo, northern Japan wants to make space tourism accessible for everyone, and “democratize space” with a two-seater cabin and a balloon that’ll rise 15 miles above the ground. The Open Univercse Project’s cabin will have one pilot and a passenger, without the need for any special training since it’s not a rocket or spaceplane.

They’ve been working on this project ever since 2012, and now it has met fruition. The attached balloon filled with helium gas will make the drum-shaped cabin (measuring 1.5 meters) rise up in the air. It’ll take off from Hokkaido, and take around two hours to complete the ascend. Then stay there for an hour to view the mesmerizing curvature of the planet and the celestial void, before descending for one-hour to return home.

Iwaya revealed the capsule cabin at a press event in Tokyo, hinting to get down the initial boarding price tag down from 24 million yen ($180,000) to somewhere in the five-figure region. They’ll have to do so since Arizona-based World View Enterprises is also developing a stratospheric balloon tour for a price tag of around $50,000 per person.

Their cabin is more spacious and the journey will last around 6-12 hours. Another high-end option by Space Perspective will transport passengers to the stratosphere for $125,000 per person in comfy luxury.

The company is accepting applications until August end for the space cabin ride slated for to take flight early next year. The first five passengers will be announced in October 2023, and the five flights will be weeks apart, subject to weather conditions.

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This pendant lamp is like a heavenly body that casts a calming glow in your room

We all need light inside the house, sometimes even during the day, but not everyone’s eyes are built the same. Some people are more sensitive to the glare of bulbs of any kind, and most indoor lighting is designed to project their light directly from the bulb, whether or not there’s some diffusing material in between. This can be uncomfortable and disconcerting for these people, creating a home environment that isn’t as relaxing and welcoming as it should be. This pendant lamp concept tries to bring that positive atmosphere back into the home by taking inspiration from the moon and planets to deliver a softer light that soothes the mind as much as it illuminates the eyes.

Designer: Maro

No one looks at the sun directly and doesn’t get blinded by its scorching light. Even during a total solar eclipse, when the moon covers most of the sun, people are advised to only view the phenomenon through reflections or tinted filters. We tend to appreciate the sun indirectly through its effects and, in the case of space objects like the moon, through the light that’s reflected off them.

Space Traveler uses that same principle of reflected light to create an even softer glow than using a filter or some material to diffuse the light coming from a bulb. The source of the light, in this case, a strip of LEDs, shines the light on a brass object which then reflects the weakened light across the room. Instead of some simplistic implementation, however, this lamp also adopts a composition that pays tribute to its heavenly inspiration.

That LED strip, for example, is installed inside a ring-shaped frame and the brass ball suspended in the center takes the place of the bulb. This shape is reminiscent of the sun and a planet that orbits around it, but with the lighting roles reversed. It is also like a planet with a glowing ring around it, like Saturn, Neptune, or Uranus. Here, the size roles are also reversed, with the ring dwarfing the reflective orb.

The Space Traveler’s overall effect is both tantalizing and eerie, casting an otherworldly glow in your room. The association with familiar heavenly bodies and the softer light also evokes some feelings of comfort. And when the ring spins around the sphere, it creates an imagery of a space-faring vessel traveling space, reflecting the light of the stars and the sun during its voyage.

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NASA x Interstellar RED3.721 watch carries a piece of Mars and human perseverance with it

Keeping track of time is a purely human construct that was first invented based on the movement of heavenly bodies. We have since then refined our clocks, of course, but they all still use the Earth as the frame of reference. That won’t do us much good when we start living on other planets, but thankfully we’re just at the cusp of our stellar colonization ambitions. In fact, we just landed our most ambitious attempt at studying our closest planetary neighbor Mars last year, a feat that is sure be highlighted in science and history books in years to come. While there are many new products that celebrate and commemorate that momentous occasion, nothing probably comes closer than a watch blessed by NASA that contains within it dust from the Red Planet and proofs of man’s tenacious nature to persevere and reach out to space.

Designer: Sebastien Colen

Click Here to Buy Now: $495.

On 18th February 2021, the Perseverance rover successfully touched down on Martian soil. It represented humanity’s most ambitious attempt so far to explore our neighbor, searching for clues of life and, more importantly, testing it for future missions and possible colonization. Unsurprisingly, there have been many commemorative products launched since then, but the Interstellar RED3.721 watch definitely takes the cake not just for being approved by NASA but also for being a treasure trove of references to that event, all done tastefully and in a stunningly elegant way.

Number “3,721” – Corresponds to the gravity of the planet observed during NASA mission.

The Red Planet – The dial showcases the pattern and features of Mars.

“7 Minutes of Terror” – The entry, descent, and landing is recognized as the shortest and most intense phase of the Mars 2020 mission.

The Original “Meatball” NASA Logo – This collection has been granted by NASA.

The most obvious is perhaps the historic date that’s engraved at the very top of the watch’s frame, though it is just the proverbial tip of the iceberg. Scattered on the watch’s surfaces are other clues that space lovers would understand, like the glowing “7 Minutes of Terror” on the 3 o’clock position that honors the seven tense minutes between the Perseverance’s entry into Martian atmosphere and its safe landing on the planet’s soil. On the back of the watch is the Perseverance’s parachute design, which is actually an encoded message that spells “Dare Mighty Things.” Even the name of the watch itself is a tribute to the Red Planet, both in the name as well as the 3.721 figure that corresponds to the planet’s gravity.

Authentic Martian Meteorite – The dust is extracted from a meteorite that has traveled millions of miles to finally crash on earth.

The most direct connection with Mars, however, is the relic housed in that same 3 o’clock position. It contains dust harvested from a Martian meteorite discovered last year in Northwest Africa. Those who opt to claim this one-of-a-kind variant of the NASA x Interstellar RED3.721 watch will be assured of its authenticity with a certificate, not to mention NASA’s authority in this collaboration.

The NASA x Interstellar RED3.721, however, isn’t just a tribute to this historic moment. It is also a handsome watch that combines the best of humanity’s ingenuity and dreams. The watch case, which is either 316L stainless steel or titanium, is colored black to represent the darkness of space. It contrasts nicely with the watch face, which is a 3D relief of Mars’ surface taken from actual scientific data. Although the watch commemorates our work towards the future, the RED3.721 bears classic watch movements, either a Miyota 8215 or a Sellita SW200-1.

The Miyota variant comes in the 316L case and with the original NASA “meatball” logo or you can get the Martian meteorite dust encased watch. Sellita’s movement is housed in titanium. The project has already raised more than $650,000 since it launched in May 2022! Whichever design you claim, you won’t just be putting a beautiful work of horology on your wrist, though you are definitely getting a product of high quality for a very affordable price tag. You will also be carrying a timepiece that represents mankind’s past perseverance, present endeavors, and future hope, all at the same time.

Click Here to Buy Now: $495.

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Enso Silicone Space Rings: Celestial Digits

Enso makes a line of celestial themed rings printed with cool space patterns like the phases of the moon, a solar eclipse, and what I assume are some sort of alien glyphs. Maybe if we can decipher them, we’ll discover the secrets of interstellar travel! They’re made from comfortable silicone, so you don’t feel like the ring is suffocating your finger like a traditional wedding band (maybe I’m just projecting),

The rings are available in whole sizes 3 to 14 and, just like all Enso silicone products, come with a lifetime guarantee. So if you somehow do manage to destroy your ring, they’ll replace it. And, God willing, you’ll learn not to do whatever it was you were doing when you destroyed it in the first place because it’s probably dangerous. I just hope you still have your finger.

I actually bought a silicone wedding band to wear whenever I’m exercising or working in the garage, which is still in the package it came in because I haven’t been to the gym, and I don’t have a garage. I’m prepared, though; that’s the important thing.

[via The Awesomer]

NASA Astronaut Space Suit Can Koozie

Because there are few things more enjoyable in life than sipping a cold one and playing space rangers, maker of outerwear-inspired koozies Puffin Drinkwear is selling this insulated Space Suit koozie. The can cover fits standard 12- and 16-ounce cans and includes a tiny closable backpack for storing other goodies like… actually, I’m not sure what. Glitterstim? Freeze-dried ice cream?

This is easily one of the top five koozies I’ve ever seen, and I will be buying one. Or rather, I’ll be putting it on my Christmas list and purchasing one myself after everybody lets me down like they have every other year. My family always asks what I want, I show them my list, and I still get a yearly membership to the Jelly of the Month Club instead.

Do you think this is what the real astronauts aboard the International Space Station drink out of? Of course not. They drink out of pouches, just like kangaroos would if they were smarter. There’s a good reason kangaroos haven’t been to the moon, you know. Granted, I don’t know what it is, but there definitely is one.

[via The Awesomer]

Desktop Mars Zen Garden: Interplanetary Peace

Originally created as places for monks to meditate on Buddha’s teachings, Zen gardens have been miniaturized and available in desktop versions for quite some time now. Just not in interplanetary form, like this Mars Zen Garden available from Uncommon Goods. The desktop meditation garden features a 10″ diameter resin tray, red sand, lava rocks, a tiny astronaut and Sojourner rover, and a rake for making patterns. I am going to have so much fun relaxing and not working!

The copper-finish nickel rake features one end for raking and the other for creating craters from meteorite impacts. How realistic. Of course, if they wanted to make it even more realistic, it should come with some alien mini-figures as well. Stop hiding the truth, NASA!

I remember I had a miniature Zen garden in high school to help calm my nerves from the high stress of youth (little did I know!), but my cat Bill eventually knocked it off my desk, and all the sand got lost in the carpet. I suppose I should just be thankful he didn’t decide to use it as a litter box instead. At least there’s that.

[via The Awesomer]

LEGO Releasing $600 Ultimate Collector’s Edition Of The Mandalorian’s Razor Crest

Already available as a 1,023-piece, $140 set, LEGO has just announced an Ultimate Collector’s Series version of The Mandalorian’s Razor Crest ship, with 6,187 pieces and a price tag of $600. Ultimate Collector indeed – you’d have to be to shell out six big bills for a LEGO set. I mean unless you’re buying it as an investment opportunity like I did with all those Beanie Babies.

The ship measures 72cm long, 50cm wide, and 24cm tall (28″ x 20″ x 9.5″), and features removable engines, a cockpit, an escape pod, and a minifig-size carbon-freezing chamber along with numerous other interior details. The set also includes minifigs of the Mandalorian, Grogu, Mythrol, and Kuiil along with a buildable Blurrg model.​ I am going to have so much fun building this set… entirely in my mind because I can’t afford the $600 price tag.

Admittedly, I bet that’s a fun build. As fun as the giant LEGO Death Star set? No clue, I couldn’t afford that one either. Looks like not much has changed for me financially in the ten years since that set came out.

[via Engadget]

James Webb Telescope Model Suggested on LEGO Ideas Website

Built by astronomer and LEGO maniac tonysmyuncle (that’s cool, Brent’s my uncle), this LEGO model of the James Webb Space Telescope is constructed as a replica of the one actually sent into space by NASA. It’s currently looking for support on the LEGO Ideas website to be considered for production by LEGO; it’s appropriately scaled to the size of minifigs, who I assume will use it to search for UFOs.

The model can be folded up into its “launch” configuration as if it were in its rocket for delivery into space or unfolded into its full telescopic glory. Its curved primary mirror is made up of 18 movable hexagonal segments, as well as its hinged secondary mirror. In addition, all the JWST’s major subsystems are incorporated, including the science instruments and the propulsion, power, and communications subsystems. It’s basically the real thing! Just smaller. And plastic. And nonfunctional.

Be sure to pledge your support on the LEGO Ideas website if you want to see the set become a reality, which I do. As a matter of fact, I just pledged my support from all sixteen of my email addresses, so I’ve clearly done my part—fun fact: I was also single-handedly responsible for getting the Mexican Pizza brought back to Taco Bell. Or at least that’s what I tell myself.

[via TechEBlog]

Washable Star Wars Area Rugs: May the Floors Be with You

Officially licensed and crafted by maker of machine-washable floor rugs Ruggable, this collection of Star Wars-themed area rugs are just the thing you need to let guests know you haven’t missed a single opportunity to include a Star Wars theme anywhere in your house. Just wait till they see your Sarlacc Pit toilet decals!

The rugs, which are by no means cheap, are available in a variety of sizes, and range from $99 for a 2′ x 3′ rug, all the way up to $709 for an 8′ x 12′. Obviously, covering my home’s floors with nothing but Star Wars area rugs is going to get expensive quickly. But do I really have any other option?

Admittedly, they’re a lot classier than I expected Star Wars-themed area rugs to be. I thought they would all scream college dorm, but they really don’t. They’re actually pretty sophisticated-looking, something I didn’t expect to find myself writing about floor rugs based on a science fantasy series. Fingers crossed for matching window treatments!