The Center for the Advancement of Science in Space recently announced a new partnership that will put Marvel characters on the ISS.
It shouldn’t come as a surprise that there are a few comic nerds working on the International Space Station, but a recent announcement from the Center for the Advancement of Science in Space (CASIS) reveals that scientists are planning on bringing two beloved characters into space with them. According to a report from Gizmodo, CASIS announced that Groot and Rocket the Raccoon from Marvel’s popular Guardians of the Galaxy would appear on a mission patch representing deliveries to the national laboratory on the International Space Station.
The image of the patch was first tweeted by director James Gunn from his seat at San Diego’s Comic-Con. Marvel cover artist Juan Doe designed the patch, and officials working with CASIS hope that the images will bring greater visibility to the ISS and inspire more people to push the limits of space travel and exploration.
According to CASIS Director of Operations and Educational Opportunities Ken Shields, “A major mission for us here at CASIS is to find unique and innovative ways to bring notoriety to the ISS National Laboratory and the research that is being conducted on our orbiting laboratory.”
The partnership with Marvel Custom Solutions represents the first time a comic character was officially involved with a space mission. CASIS hopes that the new patch will increase visibility and attract more interest to the more than 100 studies set to be carried out on the ISS National Lab over the course of 2016. CASIS will also use the new patch to help promote an education flight contest later in the year to challenge and inspire a new generation of astronauts and scientists.
“There are very few brands in the world who have as large an impact as Marvel, and we are thrilled to partner with them on this project and look forward to Rocket and Groot inspiring a new generation of researchers interested in the space station,” Shields said.
A press release from CASIS describing the new patch can be found here.