Hope Probe Sheikh Mohammed and Sheikh Hamdan
File photo of Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum (R) and Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum (L) witnessing installation of the last metal piece of Hope Probe Image Credit: Dubai Media Office

Dubai: His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, on Wednesday said the UAE’s Hope Probe to Mars has taken the aspirations of UAE people to new horizons.

Tweeting on the first anniversary since the Hope Probe successfully entered Mars’ orbit, a milestone in the annals of history, Sheikh Mohammed said: “A year ago today, the Hope Probe reached Mars, marking the Arab’s first time ever to reach the Red Planet and taking the aspirations of our people to new horizons… A year ago today, a group of Emirati Arab youth managed to break down imaginary barriers that we cannot compete the world in space industry. Happy anniversary!”

The UAE today is celebrating one year since the Hope Probe successfully entered Mars’ orbit. The first anniversary marks exactly one year since Emirates Mars Mission’s spacecraft reached the Red Planet, becoming the world’s fifth country to achieve the feat and the first in the Arab world.

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Hope Probe’s entry into the Mars orbit coincided with the UAE celebrating its Golden Jubilee in 2021. This marked the perfect start for the next 50 years of growth, progress and sustainable development, laying the foundations for a knowledge-based economy of the future.

Long journey

On 9 February, 2021, at exactly 19:42, Hope Probe successfully entered the Red Planet’s orbit, completing some of the most difficult stages of its mission. Its 493-million-kilometer journey through space to Mars took almost seven months and years of diligent and dedicated preparation.

With the successful arrival of Hope Probe last year, the UAE became the first among three space missions that reached Mars during February 2021 – the other two being the United States and China. It is now carrying out a crucial scientific mission to share an unprecedented data on the planet’s atmosphere with the world.

One year ago today, the ground control station at the Mohammed bin Rashid Space Centre (MBRSC) at Al Khawaneej, Dubai, was the centre stage and the focus of the world’s attention, during which every manoeuvre was intricately followed and managed to guide the Hope Probe into orbit.

The historic mission was watched by Sheikh Mohammed and His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces.

Millions of people across the UAE, the wider region and the world watched the nail-biting mission, which was broadcast live on TV, websites and social media. A major event was also organised in Dubai in the light of the iconic Burj Khalifa – the world’s tallest tower – which, along with the other main landmarks in the country and the Arab world were illuminated in red, to commemorate the occasion on the Red Planet.

Every movement, every manoeuvre, every milestone of Hope Probe’s arrival was captured and relayed, in the presence of international news agencies, representatives of the media, local and regional news sites, top officials and members of the Emirates Mars Mission project team.