Abu Dhabi: The UAE Space Agency has launched a Mars Summer Camp in Australia to generate enthusiasm among Emirati students for space science and exploration.
The camp was launched in Adelaide, Australia in collaboration with the Mike Roach Space Education Centre at Hamilton Secondary College and the Think Science programme of the Emirates Foundation and will run from August 4-12.
Mohammad Nasser Al Ahbabi, director general of the UAE Space Agency, said the programme is one of four launched by the Agency in 2018 as a part of the agency’s efforts to raise awareness among students of the significance of space science and the importance of space exploration for the future.
“Our efforts in this regards are in line with the UAE Space Agency’s strategic priorities, including investing in education with a special focus on the space sector and space science,” he said.
The camp programme, which is focused on nurturing youth competitiveness, covers a number of key topics and concepts related to space science and exploration, including the expansion of the universe and the challenges of space travel.
It also covers topics related to astronomy and the atmosphere, the effects of microgravity, and rocket science, which is partially explained by having students build model rockets.
Before departing the UAE on July 31 to Australia for a full week, Al Ahbabi, met with participating students and their families and thanked and congratulated them for their participation in the camp.
Al Ahbabi explained to parents how the camp has the potential to shape their children’s future careers and provide them with practical scientific expertise and expand their knowledge of the space sector and the sciences.
The camp, he added, will also provide students with the opportunity to design, build and evaluate a Mars rover model using the Lego Mindstorms EV3 technology. In addition, students will participate in mock astronaut training sessions and undergo physical fitness and readiness tests for space travel.
Maitha Hamad Al Habsi, CEO of Emirates Foundation, said Think Science is a key part of Emirates Foundation’s mission to deliver a positive impact on the lives of Emirati youth.
“Through our partnership with the UAE Space Agency, we aim to inspire, encourage and celebrate youth across the UAE by providing them with unique learning opportunities to further develop their scientific knowledge, and enabling them to become active participants in achieving the UAE’s Vision 2021 by adopting science as a key pillar of a knowledge-based economy.”
She added that the scientific expedition will go a long way towards incentivising our youth to pursue technological advancements in the field of space and science and will further encourage more schools and universities to instill the passion for research, investigation and exploration among the new generations.
“We are constantly working together with our partners to offer such opportunities for our youth to excel in the area of scientific innovation and to apply their academic knowledge for the benefit of their society,” Al Habsi said.