The first Arab interplanetary space mission commenced early on Monday morning as the Hope Probe successfully lifted off from Japan’s Tanegashima Space Centre at 1.58am (UAE time).
The UAE Space Agency and Mohammed bin Rashid Space Centre also announced that the Ground Control station located in the Al Khawaneej area of Dubai successfully received the first transmission from the Hope Probe at 03:10 am on Monday, reported official news agency WAM.
The Ground Control Team analysed the data and ensure that the solar panels on the probe were facing the sun correctly, and that all other systems were in order.
The probe placed on a Mitsubishi H-IIA rocket, which was released at 2.55am, is the first-ever Arab mission to Mars.
دولة #الإمارات تحقق حدثاً تاريخياً بإنجاز فضائي غير مسبوق على مستوى الوطن العربي، مع الإطلاق الناجح لـ #مسبار_الأمل من مركز تانيغاشيما للفضاء في اليابان#أول_عد_تنازلي_عربي #العرب_إلى_المريخ pic.twitter.com/12zgP2ujYT
— UAEGov (@uaegov) July 19, 2020
It is expected to enter Mars’ orbit in February 2021, the year that the UAE will celebrate its 50th anniversary.
The Hope probe’s liftoff to Mars is the culmination of a six-year journey of 200 Emirati engineers and researchers coming together to build the Arab world’s first spacecraft.
The Emirates Mars Mission also helped develop 200 new science technologies and build 66 parts of the probe in the UAE.
It will travel 493 million kilometers and orbit the Red Planet for one full Martian year of 687 days to provide a greater understanding of the Martian atmosphere.
The Hope probe will be the first to study the Martian climate throughout daily and seasonal cycles, observing the weather phenomena in Mars such as its vast dust storms.
The probe will gather and send back new Mars data to the Science Data Center in the UAE via different ground stations spread around the world. The data will be catalogued and analysed by the Emirates Mars Mission science team, and shared with the international Mars science community too.
لحظات انطلاق مسبار الأمل إلى المريخ حاملاً معه طموحات قيادة وشعب دولة #الإمارات وآمال كل العرب #مسبار_الأمل #أول_عد_تنازلي_عربي #العرب_إلى_المريخ pic.twitter.com/l6LrELXwlD
— UAEGov (@uaegov) July 19, 2020
On Saturday, through a video meeting held with the Emirati launch team in Japan and 21 engineers from the UAE Space Agency and Mohammed bin Rashid Space Center (MBRSC) stationed in Dubai, Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of UAE and Ruler of Dubai, Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces, and Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai and President of MBRSC, were briefed on the range of technical tasks overseen by the space mission’s team.
Read: UAE leaders review pre-flight preparations of Mars Hope Probe
The final preparations for the launch took place 18 hours prior to the launch, which was previously rescheduled a few times due to prevailing local weather conditions.
Further details about the successful launch and mission will be shared at a press conference at the Mohammed bin Rashid Space Centre on Monday at 1pm.
Video: UAE Hope Probe bound for Mars successfully launches from Japan Gulf Business.
Video: UAE Hope Probe bound for Mars successfully launches from Japan Assignment Writing.