Sheikh Hamdan signs off final piece of UAE-built Mars probe
The probe, which will be used to study the atmosphere on Mars, is set to blast off for the Red Planet in 2020
The Dubai Crown Prince, chairman of the Executive Council, chairman of Mohammed bin Rashid Space Center, and the general supervisor of the UAE’s Hope Probe, HH Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, has signed off on the final piece of a Mars probe that has been built by Emiratis.
The final metal piece will be attached to the probe, which will be used to study the atmosphere on Mars, and is set to blast off for the Red Planet this year, according to the state-run Dubai Media Office.
It will take seven to nine months for the probe to reach Mars, which means that it will arrive in the same year that the UAE celebrates its 50th anniversary since unification.
The UAE probe will study how the upper and lower layers of the planet’s atmosphere interact with one another. It will also help to create a picture of how the seasons on Mars are affected by the light of the sun.
The spacecraft will then collect two years' worth of scientific data, with an optional two-year extension that would take the mission into 2025.
The Hope Probe mission, also called the Emirates Mars Mission, is the first by any Arab or Muslim-majority country.
Signatories on the final piece of the UAE-built probe also include Vice President, Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, HH Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum; Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the Armed Forces, HH Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, and members of the UAE Supreme Council, among others.