Gnome Chompski Goes Into Space

A Gnome goes into space. It was launched onboard Rocket Lab`s Electron rocket from the Mahia Launch Complex 1A from New Zealand. It was launched on November 20. 2020 on Electron`s 16th flight. The mission name was `Return To Sender` which was a reference to its attempt to recover the first stage. This was successful recovered by parachute when it landed in the water of the coast.

It was a mass simulator that was fixed to the missions Kick Stage during all the mission phases and eventually burnt up on re-entry into the Earths atmosphere during the de-orbiting process and it was in the form of Gnome Chompski.

 It was 3D printed with the aim of testing and qualifying a novel technique of 3D printing from titanium that could be used for future spacecraft components. It was manufactured with support from the multi award winning design studio Weta Workshop. It was printed in the form of Half-life gaming icon Gnome Chompski. The mission serves as a homage to the innovation and creativity of gamers worldwide. It was created for Gabe Newell, founder of Valve Software. The Weta Workshops were the creative studio behind the films Lord Of The Rings, Avatar and Mulan.

Gnome Chompski

Electron launch 16 `Return To Sender` patch

Denmark Gnome stamps