Hope Probe, the Arab World’s first interplanetary mission is celebrating a huge milestone today after becoming the first country to reach Mars’ orbit on its first attempt.
At 7:42 pm, the Emirates Mars Mission team confirmed Hope Probe successfully reaching the orbit of Mars after completing a seven-month-long journey spanning a whopping 495 million kilometres.
This makes the UAE the fifth country to make it to Mars, joining an elite club featuring the US, Russia, India and the European Union.
As soon as the news broke, Burj Khalifa marked Hope Probe’s success going all out with a dazzling light show, fireworks and illuminating a slew of visuals of the interplanetary mission with UAE Royals.
Hope Probe’s arrival into the red planet couldn’t have come at a better occasion, perfectly in time for the UAE’s 50th year of Union formation. His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Ruler of Dubai, UAE Prime Minister and Vice President says “The arrival of the Hope probe is a signal for the start of the UAE’s fiftieth year celebrations… the golden jubilee… our celebrations are different .. scientific, cultural [and] inspiring because we are trying to build a development model .. a model that tells Arab youth we are people of a civilization.”
Photograph credit: Dubai Media Office
What’s more, the interplanetary mission begins a new era of space exploration for the Arab World as the Hope Probe was entirely manufactured and executed by a team of Emirati engineers and scientists, led by Sarah Al Amiri, Project Manager of the Emirates Mars Mission. His Highness Sheikh Mohammad bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi, congratulated the team saying “This achievement was made possible by the Emirati pioneers whose work will inspire future scientists and engineers for generations. We are immensely proud of them.” He also tributed the UAE’s founding father, His Highness Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan for the Emirates Mars Mission and lauded this historic moment as “a second national day” for the country.
A brief background about the Hope Probe
Unless you’re in the know, the probe launched last July for a 495 million km-long voyage to Mars at a speed of 121,000 km/hr.
There’s a line-up of objectives for the Hope Probe to achieve, from understanding Mars’ climate dynamics to examining weather changes that impact the escape of Hydrogen and Oxygen and lastly, understanding the structure and variability of Hydrogen and Oxygen in the upper atmosphere.
Majority of the objectives go in line with The Mars Exploration Program Advisory Group (MEPAG)’s primary goals in an attempt to understand the Martian planet.
Photograph credit: Emirates Mars Mission