Lego will honour five women for their contribution to the US space agency NASA
Lego lovers everywhere rejoice! The Danish toy maker has announced
it plans to honour five women scientists, engineers and astronauts for their contributions to the US space agency NASA. The new toy set of five figurines celebrates computer scientist Margaret Hamilton, scientist Katherine Johnson, the first American woman in space Sally Ride, the first African-American astronaut in space Mae Jemison and astronomer Nancy Grace Roman. Maia Weinstock
, an American science writer and Lego enthusiast, pitched the winning idea during a Lego Ideas
You may immediately recognise at least one of the women - mathematician and space scientist Katherine Johnson. Taraji P Henson recently played her in the award-winning movie Hidden Figures
, about African-American mathematicians working at NASA in the 1960s. She is best known for calculating and verifying trajectories for the Mercury and Apollo programs - including the Apollo 11 mission that first landed humans on the moon.
The woman who dreamt up the toy set
says she hopes the figurines will "inspire more girls to pursue careers in science." STEM professions (science, technology, engineering and maths) are typically male-dominated in most countries.
An Australian Lego fan, who runs Jay's Brick Blog
, says: "I'm going to get at least two copies of this set - one for myself to build and enjoy, and I'll save one for my daughter. Maybe one day, she'll come to me and ask "Can I become an astronaut?" or "why are all the NASA people in the movie men?" - in which I'll proudly pull the Women of NASA set out and tell her that her gender will not stand in the way of achieving her dreams."
The Lego Ideas competition takes place twice a year. A proposal must have at least 10,000 votes from the public to be eligible to be considered by Lego. Only one or two design ideas are eventually selected for production. "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," a Lego Ideas post
The toy set is expected to be available in late 2017 or early 2018.