UAE becomes the first Arab nation to launch mission to Mars
The United Arab Emirates successfully launched its Mars-bound Hope Probe from the Tanegashima Space Center in Japan.
With the launch of Hope probe, the UAE marked the Arab world’s first interplanetary mission.
The mission, which will reach Mars in February 2021, was delayed by a week due to inclement weather. The probe will remain in the mars orbit for a complete Martian year, equaling 687 days on earth.
“It’s an honor to be part of the global efforts to explore deep space,” tweeted the official Hope Mars Mission account after the launch. “The Hope Probe is the culmination of every single step that humans have taken throughout history to explore the unknown depths of space.”
Omran Sharaf said that the probe is a part of the efforts of putting the first human being on mars. The data will provide a complete picture of the Martian atmosphere.
“What is unique about this mission is that for the first time the scientific community around the world will have an holistic view of the Martian atmosphere at different times of the day at different seasons,” Sharaf said in a pre-launch briefing. “We have a strategy to contribute to the global effort in developing technologies and science work that will help one day if humanity decides to put a human on Mars.”
One of three missions this year
The race to mars to reach is heating up and three different probe missions are planned for 2020. The Al-Amal probe, as it is called, is the first such launch by an Arab country. The United States and China are also sending missions to Mars this year.
NASA tweeted to wish the expedition well and is eager to join the journey. “I wish you a successful journey and look forward to the sol when we are both exploring Mars … I cannot wait to join you on the journey!” the tweet read.