Saskatchewan in Space Part 3: Mars Rover Chainmail
We would like to thank the University of Saskatchewan Space Team, University of Saskatchewan Computer Museum, Claybank Brick Plant National Historic Site, Dr. Dafydd Williams, NASA’s Kennedy Space Center, Douglas Lindner and Ken Mayhew for providing information and/or photos for these blog posts.
Saskatchewan is probably not the first place that comes to mind when people discuss space exploration, but there are a number of Saskatchewan connections to this topic! One of the WDM’s curatorial priorities is the collection and preservation of Saskatchewan innovations. We work towards this priority through projects like the Saskatchewan Patent Index and our Fuelled by Innovation exhibit at the WDM Saskatoon, where about half the vehicles are Saskatchewan-made.
Over the course of five weeks we will share five website features about space exploration and Saskatchewan innovation. Each feature will highlight one person or object with ties to Saskatchewan. From bricks made in Claybank to computer technology developed in Saskatoon to chainmail made in Swift Current, Saskatchewan has plenty of ties to space exploration!
Our third feature in this series is on chainmail made for a Mars rover.
Mars Rover Chainmail
On November 26, 2018, NASA’s InSight lander successfully landed on Mars. Having launched in May of that year, it was an exciting moment for anyone interested in space exploration, as only about 40% of missions sent to Mars by any space agency land successfully.
It was also an exciting moment for Swift Current company MailleTec, offshoot of Saskatoon company The Ring Lord. MailleTec, which had previously made chainmail for movies including Game of Thrones and The Hobbit, had made a chainmail cover or ‘skirt’ for the rover to protect the delicate equipment from heat and dust. The chainmail was made using metal ‘scales’ produced by The Ring Lord in Saskatoon.
By: Kaiti Hannah, Curatorial Associate