A Danish astronaut’s upcoming space mission has gotten the stamp of approval from the Faroe Islands and Greenland.
Posta Faroe Islands and Tusass Greenland, the two countries’ postal services, have collaborated to produce a single postage stamp design commemorating European Space Agency (ESA) astronaut Andreas Mogensen’s “Huginn” mission to the International Space Station (ISS). The stamp was issued in both of the Kingdom of Denmark overseas territories on Friday (Aug. 11).
“What an honor!” wrote Mogensen, reacting to the stamp’s release on X (formerly known as Twitter).
The postage stamp also depicts the International Space Station, where Mogensen will live and conduct the Huginn mission for the next six months. Mogensen is set to launch to the space station on SpaceX’s Crew Dragon “Endurance” as pilot of the Crew-7 mission. Once on board the orbiting laboratory, he will join the station’s 69th and then 70th expeditions.
The stamp’s design is the same in both countries, with the exception of the text and denomination. The Posta Faroe Islands’ version has the Faeroese name for the Faroe Islands, “Føroyar,” inscribed at the bottom left of the stamp, while the Tusass Greenland issue has “Kalaallit Nunaat,” Greenlandic for “Land of the Greenlanders.” In the Faroe Islands, the stamp has a face value of 31 Krone and in Greenland, 32 Krone.
In addition to the stamp, also offered is a stamp sheet, with cultural depictions tying together the Nordic and Inuit heritage. Greenland shares its heritage with the Inuit culture, which also includes Canada and Alaska. The Faroe Islands share a heritage with the Nordic countries.
On the left of the sheet is a drawing of the Greenlandic Akvkos, a shaman in Inuit culture, with the raven spirit Qaartukuk, and on the right the Norse god Odin with the raven Huginn returning after a day scouting the world to gather information.
“As I was researching Greenland’s cultural heritage, I came across the poem ‘Qaartuluk,’ meaning ‘Song of the Raven Spirit,’ said Petersen. “The song tells the story of a shaman with a raven companion that searched the unknown for knowledge for its shaman master. It was perfect to connect the two cultures, Huginn from Nordic and Qaartuluk from Inuit.”
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The stamp sheet also includes the Huginn mission patch as created by ESA graphic designer Karen Lochtenberg. Rendered in the red and white of the Danish flag, as well as ESA’s own “Deep Space Blue” color, the insignia depicts the raven Huginn flying to the right, moving into the future as it glides over an Earth-rise horizon, which could also be seen as the moon or Mars. Details in the shading of the raven symbolize Denmark, the journey to the space station and the complex’s solar arrays.
Six stars in the background of the patch form a constellation that resembles the Viking symbol for “safe travels.”
Accompanying the stamp’s release, a Huginn folder is also available, with the front page showing Peterson’s impression of a raven with Earth and the moon behind it and images from Mogensen’s training inside.