190927 Hazzaa
Hazzaa AlMansoori on board the International Space Station. Image Credit: YouTube/Nasa

Baikonur: Emirati astronaut Hazzaa AlMansoori, currently in orbit on the International Space Station (ISS), is truly putting God first in this mission by starting his first day in space in prayer.

Hazzaa arrived safely at the ISS at 2.12am UAE time on Thursday aboard the Soyus MS-15 spacecraft with Russian commander Oleg Skripochka and Nasa astronaut Jessica Meir.

Hazzaa’s first day on the ISS reserved for activities was relatively short because the spacecraft arrived to the ISS late the day before.

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He started his day by praying, according to the Mohammed bin Rashid Space Centre (MBRSC).

He then communicated with the team at the ground station in Moscow, and informed them of his daily schedule. This is assuming he has had his mandatory rest on day one.

Nasa on Thursday said “all nine crewmembers are sleeping in today and will soon be getting ready for more space traffic”.

A first day orientation was also in order and the newcomers were briefed on station safety procedures. “They will be getting up to speed with life in microgravity over the next several days,” Nasa said.

After reporting to ground control, Hazzaa spoke to Dr Hanan Al Suwaidi, the Emirati flight surgeon for the mission, to update her on his condition.

Although his first day in orbit was relatively short, Hazzaa was able to record a short film about the ISS and his activities onboard. He then recorded his diary for 15 minutes.

He then began the experiments involving schools in the UAE as part of MBRSC’s Science in Space initiative.

The initiative comes in two phases. The first phase involved 16 UAE schools with Hazzaa present at the workshops.

The second phase is conducting the actual experiments in a microgravity environment while Hazzaa is in space.

Results of the two phases will be compared to contribute to supporting the UAE curriculum with new scientific materials that will be the result of the UAE’s first human space flight.

Hazzaa will also perform three daily experiments to observe the impact of microgravity on seed germination rates, the growth of aquatic organisms, and the oxidisation rates of steel.

Other experiments focus on the human body where Hazzaa will conduct experiments to study Brain DTI, Osteology, motor control, time perception in microgravity, Fluidics (fluid dynamics in space), and DNAm-Age.