UAE’s Mars Mission Launch Postponed To July 17 At 12.43 AM

by Vaishnavi Venkataraman
UAE’s Mars Mission Launch Postponed To July 17 At 12.43 AM

The UAE was all set to launch its first-ever Arab mission to the Red Planet on 15 July. However, in a recent update, it was announced that the launch has been postponed. The sudden decision was made considering the weather conditions at the launch site of Tanegashima Island in Japan.

The new launch date and time will be announced in a “few hours”, the government added.

Earlier in April, the Hope probe was  transferred from Dubai’s Mohammed bin Rashid Space Centre to its launch site in Japan. It is now ready to be rolled out onto the launch pad at the Tanegashima island in Japan. Meanwhile, here are Khalifa Satellite’s Lockdown Images Of Airports Across The World.

The probe was initially expected to be completed in ten years. However, engineers worked round the clock, despite the pandemic and now the Hope probe has been completed in less than six years, and at half the cost.

“The Hope Probe represents a turning point for the Arab and Islamic world in the space sector. Reaching Mars is not only a scientific goal, it sends a message to our Arab youth that we are capable and that hope transcends the distance between earth and the skies,” Sheikh Mohammed said.


The UAE Mars Mission- What We Know So Far

The Hope Probe, Al Amal in Arabic, will become the first to provide a complete picture of the Martian atmosphere and its layers. The probe will take off from the Tanegashima Space Centre in Japan, on rocket H-IIA. The launch was scheduled to take place at 12.51 am (UAE time). The launch was said to take about 30 to 40 minutes, and people can watch it on the mission’s official website. The live stream will be available in English and Arabic.

The trip to Mars will take about 7 months- which means the Probe is expected to reach its destination in 2021- marking UAE’s 50th anniversary. The Tanegashima authorities have suspended all viewing events. Space officials, who attend the launch must complete a mandatory 15-day quarantine. Omran Sharaf, project manager for the Emirates Mars Mission, said that UAE’s mars mission will be a big boost to the entire region.

Progress Of The Hope Probe

· The Hope spacecraft has been transported to the Tanegashima Space Centre in Japan

· The probe has been assembled with the H-IIA rocket

· Second stage of the rocket assembled onto the first stage

· Final checks carried and fuel leakage tests have been conducted

· Fitting test with payload fairing

· Spacecraft fuelled with 800kgs of hydrogen

· Encapsulated into the payload fairing

· Transported from the Spacecraft Fairing and Assembly Building to the Vehicle Assembly Building

On the day of the launch, the Hope Probe will be mounted on top of the rocket after further weather checks. The rocket will then be rolled out to the launch pad, with hourly weather checks in place.