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A fan's idea for a Lego toy to celebrate the Hubble Space Telescope's 25th anniversary just came into greater focus.
On Sunday, Gabriel Russo's design for a model of the famous orbiting observatory topped 10,000 votes on Lego Ideas, a website where fans can share and vote for new Lego kits. Projects that get 10,000 votes of support are considered by Lego for production and sale.
The 10,000th vote for Russo's Hubble model came in just before the cutoff for Lego's fall review period, giving the Danish toy company perhaps enough time for a set to be ready for the satellite's 25th anniversary next year. [Lego and Space: A Toy Brick Photo Odyssey]
"A Lego model of [the Hubble] would come as a perfect homage to its 25th anniversary in 2015," Russo wrote as a part of his model's description on the Ideas website.
The school bus-sized telescope was deployed by the space shuttle Discovery's STS-31 crew on April 25, 1990.
In the decades since its launch, the observatory has captured the world's attention through the astronaut missions that repaired and upgraded it, and the stunning imagery and discoveries about the cosmos that it has returned.
Russo's replica captures many of the features of the real Hubble Space Telescope, including its solar panel wings, antenna booms, astronaut handrails and instrument bays. In response to fans' feedback, Russo reduced the size of his original model by 35 to 40 percent so that it would be to scale with Lego's minifigures, and he has included two spacewalking astronauts as part of his idea for the set.
Russo's Hubble will now be considered alongside other fan-created Lego models that also received at least 10,000 votes over the past four months. These sets include a model of the Disney-Pixar robot WALL-E and Lego replicas of Darth Vader's and Luke Skywalker's lightsabers from "Star Wars."
The review board includes Lego's professional designers and product managers.
To date, the fan program has resulted in eight Lego kits being offered, including models based on the Hayabusa asteroid probe and NASA's Curiosity Mars rover.
— Robert Z. Pearlman, CollectSpace.com
This is a condensed version of a report from CollectSpace.com. Read the full report. Follow CollectSpace.com on Facebook and on Twitter at @CollectSpace. Copyright 2014 CollectSpace.com. Distributed by Space.com. All rights reserved.