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spaceSpace and Physics

NASA’s Pumpkin Carving Contest Is Out Of This World

author

Ben Taub

Freelance Writer

clockOct 31 2016, 16:02 UTC

Pumpkin Pi anyone? JPL via Flickr

What happens when you mix the world’s top astrophysicists with Halloween-themed arts and crafts materials? The answer can be found every year at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Lab (JPL), which has just hosted its annual pumpkin carving nerd-fest for the sixth time – and the results are nothing short of spectacular.

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NASA's latest space telescope. Aaron Yazzie via Twitter

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As per usual, the JPL engineers have shunned the traditional jack-o-lantern ghoulish faces in favor of space-themed creations, including a UFO abducting a cow in its traction beam, a pumpkin-seed-swallowing black hole, and a telescope peering out at the planets of the Solar System as they orbit the Sun.

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Juno orbiting a pumpkin Jupiter and its moon Europa. JPL via Flickr

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A UFO abducts a representative from Earth. Aaron Yazzie via Twitter

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Several entries paid homage to some of NASA’s recent missions, including two pumpkin-based models of Juno hovering over Jupiter and Europa, while others tackled other topical issues such as the presidential election.

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Juno orbiting Jupiter. JPL via Flickr

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Pac-Man makes an appearance. JPL via Flickr

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Never ask an astrophysicist for their political opinion. Aaron Yazzie via Twitter

Popular culture was well represented among the weird and wonderful creations, with Darth Vader, Pac-Man, and Stranger Things all depicted in pumpkin form. One entry even wished a happy birthday to JPL itself, which was founded on Halloween exactly 80 years ago.

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Darth Vader gets in on the act. Aaron Yazzie via Twitter

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JPL is 80 years old today. JPL via Flickr

The contest has no official winner, so you’ll have to choose your own favorite.

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A particularly pointless entry. JPL via Flickr

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A Halloween fairground ride. JPL via Flickr

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NASA always takes Halloween to the next level. JPL via Flickr

Pumpkins are the perfect receptacles for Martian soil samples. JPL via Flickr

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A Stranger Things-based entry. Aaron Yazzie via Twitter

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A black hole. Aaron Yazzie via Twitter


spaceSpace and Physics
  • tag
  • nasa,

  • Mars,

  • jupiter,

  • europa,

  • JPL,

  • Halloween,

  • juno,

  • pac-man,

  • Darth Vader,

  • Stranger Things

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