One Giant Leap for Lego-Mankind

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Lego Man in Space launch from Canada

The latter half of the last century saw bitter rivalry between the U.S.A. and the U.S.S.R. in the so-called space race. With the two ideologically opposed nations achieving the technological feats of sending into space: rockets, satellites, a dog, men and then landing men on the moon. Further endeavours include, a space station orbiting the earth and even probes exploring beyond the Solar System.

Alas, the years of research, the expense and the danger of the astronauts and/or cosmonauts are all but forgotten as the YouTube audience collectively exclaims: “awesome” as they witness a little Lego Minifigure ascend 80,000 feet above the planet.

Two teenagers from Toronto were responsible for adding Canada to the league of space-age nations. Mathew Ho and Asad Muhammad, both 17, bought an $85 weather balloon online, $160 worth of helium from a party store and a special wide-angle video camera. A mobile phone was used for its GPS function and to beam pictures back. Four cameras were on board the styrofoam craft, with mitten warmers used to keep them working at high altitude.

When the balloon reached a height of four miles it passed beyond mobile phone reception range, and therefore the GPS signal cut-out. Some 97 minutes after take-off, an alert on an iPad told the pair that the Lego man had landed in a field (near Rice Lake) 75 miles away.

This adventure into space is said to have cost no more than 400 Canadian dollars.

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