UAE Hope Probe reaches Mars' orbit safely
File photo of man walking past rendering of UAE's Hope Probe to Mars Image Credit: AFP

Abu Dhabi: The Emirates Mars Mission (EMM) has launched its fifth edition of ‘Explore Mars’ competition, offering students the chance to study Mars using data from EMM’s Science Data Centre for the first time.

The contest – for students studying STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths) – gives them an opportunity to analyse the science data gathered by UAE’s Hope Probe to Mars, working individually or collaborating in teams of up to three people.

To enter, students are required to produce an A1 format scientific poster – a commonly used presentation of science data used in international science meetings and events. The posters will be judged by a panel and evaluated based on their scientific content and insight, design and presentation.

Cash prizes

Three winners will be selected from the entries received, qualifying for prizes of Dh10,000, Dh7,000 and Dh5,000, respectively. Students have until November 2 to register for the competition. For competition guidelines and registration, students should contact

Omran Sharaf, project director of EMM at Mohammed Bin Rashid Space Centre, said: “This is the first time in the five years we have been holding the Explore Mars competition that we have been able to offer students the chance to analyse live data from our own instruments, so we are particularly excited to see what insights and discoveries they manage to pull together.”

He added: “The EMM Science Data Centre is currently hosting data gathered from Hope’s first mission phase, including ground-breaking observations of Mars’ discrete aurora and our findings of unusually high concentrations of atmospheric oxygen and carbon monoxide.”

What is the competition about?

The competition is geared towards refining students’ research skills by exposing them to the EMM Science Data Centre and the analytical tools required to compare and contrast the Hope Probe’s unique data sets.

Hessa Al Matrooshi, EMM science lead, said: “After sharing the first batch of data gathered by Hope Probe with the scientific community, we are excited to use this contest as an opportunity to get students excited about using the data to serve as a launch pad to inspire and encourage them to explore careers in space science.”

Mars mission

EMM is studying the relationship between the upper layer and lower regions of the Martian atmosphere, giving the international science community full access to a holistic view of the Martian atmosphere at different times of the day, through different seasons.

The Hope Probe’s historic journey to the Red Planet coincides with a year of celebrations to mark the UAE’s Golden Jubilee.