UAE-Bahrain space-1637142109717
Sarah bint Yousef Al Amiri and Kamal bin Ahmed Mohammed, along with other officials from the UAE and Bahrain, discussed ways to enhance prospects for cooperation in the space sector. Image Credit: WAM

Dubai: Sarah bint Yousef Al Amiri, UAE Minister of State for Advanced Technology and Chairwoman of the UAE Space Agency, and Kamal bin Ahmed Mohammed, Minister of Transportation and Communications and Chairman of the National Space Science Agency in Bahrain, discussed ways to enhance prospects for cooperation in the space sector.

In their meeting held on the sidelines of the Dubai Airshow 2021, the two ministers also discussed the latest developments in joint space projects. Several officials from both sides were present at the meeting.

Sarah bint Yousef Al Amiri said: “The UAE cherishes the longstanding ties with the Kingdom of Bahrain. Under the guidance and support of the leadership, The UAE Space Agency gives special importance to strengthening constructive cooperation and exchanging experiences and knowledge with the National Space Science Agency in Bahrain. We are pleased to see the remarkable development in bilateral relations between the two agencies.”

Letter of intent

The meeting also covered the UAE Space Agency’s participation in the upcoming Bahrain International Airshow, to be held late next year. The two parties also signed a letter of intent, expressing the UAE Space Agency’s interest in participating in the event, marking a reflection of the distinguished partnership between the UAE Space Agency and the National Space Science Agency in Bahrain.

Al Amiri added that the cooperation between the UAE and Bahrain is moving forward in order to achieve the ambitions and plans of the two countries in the space sector, while joint projects, led by the Light-1 nanosatellite, are witnessing rapid developments that confirm the determination of the two countries to raise their cooperation to new heights.

‘Leveraging social and economic benefits’

Mohammed said: “We are focused on supporting and strengthening the deep, special and longstanding ties between Bahrain and the UAE. Space, science and technology have a profound impact on our daily lives and both nations are determined to enhance collaboration and leverage the social and economic benefits these knowledge-based industries offer. It was a pleasure to speak to Her Excellency Sarah Bint Yousef Al Amiri today to discuss the latest progress on our joint nanosatellite Light-1 project as well explore ways we can contribute to the growth of our respective space industries in the future.

During the meeting, several topics were discussed, most notably the latest Light-1 nanosatellite developments. Built and designed in collaboration between Khalifa University, New York University Abu Dhabi, NSSA and UAE Space Agency, the nanosatellite will monitor and study terrestrial gamma ray flashes (TGFs). It is scheduled to launch on board SpaceX’s Falcon 9 rocket, which will travel to the International Space Station next month.

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Distinguished role of Khalifa University

The meeting also dealt with the most prominent developments in the national space sector in both countries, as well as future plans, initiatives and upcoming projects. The two parties also reviewed a number of aspects of cooperation between them in accordance with the previously-concluded memoranda of understanding, praising the distinguished role of Khalifa University of Science, Technology and Research in training of members from Bahrain’s National Space Science Agency. It has served to upskill them on space technologies and involve them in the implementation of several projects, which contributed to their qualification and experience in the space sector.