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Lasers, Rockets and Robots, oh my!

In case you weren't one of the 500,000+ people there, here are some sights and sounds from this weekend's USA Science and Engineering Festival in Washington, D.C.

Many queued up to have a picture taken with Bill Nye the Science Guy at The Planetary Society's LightSail booth. Nye, who is executive director of the Society, was also signing autographs.

Did you ever want to see a tattoo being removed with lasers? Guests who waited in the long line at the LaserFest haunted house got to do just that, watching as Dr. Sean O'Malley, a LaserFest on the Road grant recipient, removed a tattoo from a pig's foot using a laser. Visitors also saw sound transferred across the room via lasers thanks to a SpectraSound laser sound transmission kit.

Astronauts Ken Reightler (left), Pam Melroy and Brian Duffy signed autographs at Lockheed Martin's "Meet the Astronauts" booth.

Ever wonder who is faster: Superman or the Flash? Dr. James Kakalios, of the University of Minnesota, had the answer. "The Flash, of course!" he said during his "Everything I Know About Science I Learned from Reading Comic Books" talk. Kakalios also explained what killed Gwen Stacy, Spider-Man's girlfriend, using physics formulas.

Aspiring pilots took the controls of Lockheed Martin's F-35 Lightning II future fighter simulator.

Visitors checked out Lockheed Martin's interactive "naNotube" to learn about the role of nanotechnology in everyday life.

The LaserFest team paused at the end of the day on Saturday for a quick photo in front of the haunted house.


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