One of the most fun things about working here at the X PRIZE Foundation is that we occasionally get the chance to stand very close to experimental rockets that pushing the boundaries of what is possible. In addition to providing unparalleled motivation to study one's technical material and an excellent workout for the adrenal glands, this also affords us the opportunity to snap some truly classic photos.
During last year's Northrop Grumman Lunar Lander X CHALLENGE, Amanda Stiles snapped this beauty:
That photo is now one of the finalists in a photo contest being run by GOOD Magazine. The photo contest was built around the theme of "Celebration" -- and I'd say this shot definitely counts. Here's the description:
"Rocket engineer Ben Brockert celebrates the successful takeoff of the rocket 'Xombie,' built by Mojave, CA-based Masten Space Systems. This successful flight, and two similar flights by another of the company's rockets, won Masten Space Systems $1.15 million in NASA prize money through the Northrop Grumman Lunar Lander X CHALLENGE, an incentive prize program offered by the non-profit X PRIZE Foundation." Photo by Amanda Stiles
Note that an early version of the caption incorrectly attributed the photo to me (Will), but the credit should go to Amanda. We're told that caption is being updated.
You can view all of the finalists and vote for your favorite here by following these instructions.
- Visit the photo slideshow online by clicking here.
- Click through the slideshow and find your favorite (hint, hint, number 12 is pretty darn cool!).
- Log on to the site (you may need to create a new account--or you can log in with your Facebook account by using clicking the Facebook Connect button.
- Leave a comment on that post listing the number (hint: #12!) of the photo you like the best.
Note that commenting is the only way to vote. Commenting on this post, retweeting, Facebook "like-ing," or even clicking the "Mark it GOOD!" option on that page are all very much appreciated, but don't count as votes. Also note that the contest rules don't say when the voting deadline is, but they do say that "the winning entry will be announced August 26..." so presumably the deadline is Wednesday at the latest!
The winner gets published in the next issue of the magazine. It should be a good (no pun intended) opportunity to introduce a whole new audience to the Joy of Rocketing! Many thanks to those of you who have already voted, and kudos for a great shot, Amanda!