Dubai: The UAE’s Mars Hope Probe has been successfully transferred from the Mohammad Bin Rashid Space Centre in Dubai to the launch site on Tanegashima island in Japan.
The announcement was tweeted on Saturday by Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minsiter of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai.
He praised the move “as one of the most important final stages of the launch of the first Arab-Islamic probe for Mars”.
The transfer took place under the supervision of a team of Emirati engineers in a process that took 83 hours of continuous work, Sheikh Mohammed tweeted.
Despite the conditions of travel stopping globally, and despite the global health precautions, Emirati engineers are still working according to the approved schedule for the completion of the most important scientific space project in the region, he said.
The probe was developed in less than the usual period globally (only six years compared to 10) and at half the cost, Sheikh Mohammed added in a series of tweets. A video and pictures documenting the historic transfer were also shared.
The aim is to launch the probe in July, with the unmanned reaching the Martian atmosphere sometime in 2021 to study it in unprecedented detail.
Sheikh Mohammed said the achievement represents a turning point for the Arab and Islamic worlds in the field of space. He added that reaching Mars was not only a scientific goal, but its goal is to also send a message to the new generation in the Arab world that “we are capable and that nothing is impossible”.