First image taken by the Hope Probe of Mars from afar.
Gulf Today, Staff Reporter
His Highness Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, shared the first image taken by the Hope Probe of Mars from afar.
Sheikh Mohammed said on Twitter, “We received the Hope Probe's first sighting of its destination, Mars, after the spacecraft travelled one million km into space. Beyond the sky is where our dreams start.”
The image had a caption which read, “First Mars sighting by Hope Probe (taken by star trackers)”
The Hope Probe (Al Amal in Arabic) blasted off from the Tanegashima Space Center aboard a Mitsubishi Heavy Industries’ H-IIA rocket on time at 6:58 am (2158 GMT Sunday) after being delayed five days by bad weather.
Mitsubishi later said the probe successfully separated from the rocket and was now on its solo journey to Mars.
"The UAE is now a member of the club and we will learn more and we will engage more and we’ll continue developing our space exploration programme,” UAE Space Agency chief Mohammed Al Ahbabi told a joint online news conference from Tanegashima.
The manoeuvre ensures that the orbiter is moving in the right direction towards Mars.
The Government of Dubai Media Office on Twitter shared a post of babies born on the day of the historic red letter day. The media office wrote, “Astronauts of the future, born on Feb 9, 2021 — the day the UAE made it to Mars.
Two giant 100-metre cranes and 40-metre screen made the moons visible from long distances allowing people to see what the probe sees.
During the meeting, they reviewed the ties between the two friendly countries across various domains and ways of enhancing them to achieve their common interests.
The impoverished Central Asian country with ties to Russia and China has seen three presidents resign over political crises fuelled by corruption, nepotism and disputed votes since gaining independence from the Soviet Union in 1991.
Sheikh Mansour Bin Zayed Al Nahyan also sent congratulatory messages to the King of Sweden and to the Prime Minister Ulf Kristersson.