The UAE continues to proudly push for greater heights in the field of space science as seen during the recent months when the UAE has first launched its very own satellite, KhalifaSat, and the training of two Emirati astronauts in preparation for the ISS mission slated later this year.
And on that note, much excitement has started to brew in the Middle East since early this year as the very first Emirati astronaut to fly into space was soon to be named, and forever to be recognized in history for this huge achievement for the country as well as for space science.
.@MBRSpaceCentre announces that it has selected Hazzaa Al Mansoori as the prime astronaut and Sultan Al Neyadi as the backup astronaut for the International Space Station (ISS) mission.https://t.co/w8RgjlpLf9 pic.twitter.com/Bye9eAn2CB
— Dubai Media Office (@DXBMediaOffice) April 12, 2019
Mohammed bin Rashid Space Centre Announces Emirati Astronaut to go on First Space Mission
On Friday (April 12), the Mohammed bi Rashid Space Centre officially named Hazza Al Mansoori as the first astronaut from the UAE to fly for an eight-day mission to the International Space Station this September, as shared in a report by WAM.
The former pilot, with over 14 years of experience, was selected out of 4,000+ candidates who applied for the prestigious UAE Astronaut Programme by the Mohammed bin Rashid Space Centre.
The announcement on the selection was made by the Dubai Media Office, and the back-up astronaut for this mission will be Sultan Al Neyadi, a former IT professional.
According to Salem Al Marri, Assistant Director General for Science and Technology Sector and Head of the UAE Astronaut Programme, the advanced skill levels and proficiency of Al Mansoori and Al Neyadi in the field of space science and training show the Emirati youth’s capacity and determination to succeed in any field. Al Marri also noted that the MBRSC continues to invest in the Emirati youth to succeed in this sector.
During his mission, Al Mansoori will be giving a tour presentation in Arabic of the ISS, wherein he will explain the components of the station as well as the equipment on board. Additionally, he will be conducting earth observation and explaining imaging experiences, interacting with ground stations, sharing information, as well as documenting the daily lives of astronauts at the station.
During his stay at the ISS, Al Mansoori will specifically conduct a scientific mission to study the impact of microgravity in comparison with that of gravity on Earth. The mission will involve 15 experiments that will be selected based on MBRSC’s ‘Science in Space’ competition, which targets schools in the UAE.