After its first mission to Mars, UAE announced an another mission on Tuesday. It would explore Venus and land on its asteroid belt before the end of the decade. UAE will thus become the 4th country to achieve this milestone.
This mission would take seven years to build and launch in 2028, orbiting Venus and then Earth, and then using gravity assist maneuvers in reaching a nearby asteroid belt in 2030. After observing 7 main belt asteroids, the vehicle would finally land on the asteroid 560 million kilometers (347 million miles) away in 2033.
The mission will be collaborated efforts of various universities and laboratories
Venus missions have been going on since the 1960s. Soviet Union, USA the European Space Agency, and Japan all have successfully orbited the second planet from the sun.
But this mission will be built in collaboration with the University of Colorado, Boulder’s Laboratory for Atmospheric and Space Physics. It will travel 3.6 billion kilometers (2.2 billion miles), seven times further than the UAE’s Hope probe, which arrived on Mars in February 2021. The UAE became only the second country in history to successfully enter Mars’ orbit on its first attempt. India was the first.
“We have set our eyes to the stars because our journey to development and progress has no boundaries, no borders and no limitations … With each new advancement we make in space, we create opportunities for young people here on Earth,” said Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum ( UAE Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai)
A synopsis on previous Mars mission
The Hope probe (or “Al Amal” in Arabic ), a $200 million project was launched on July 20, 2020, from Tanegashima Space Center (Japan). This UAE’s project was six years in the making. And it made the small Gulf sheikhdom only the fifth country in the world to reach Mars. Infact it is the first to do so in the Arab world.
The Emirates Mars Mission partnered with a team from the University of Colorado to build the Hope spacecraft. But the oil-rich Gulf country itself has spent years investing in space research and development. It founded its space agency in 2014 after launching satellites in 2009 and 2013 developed jointly with South Korean partners.
UAE and its aspirations never fail
The UAE is known for its big aspirations, and it has one again proved it by being one among the handful of nations to do so. This is a great achievement as the UAE space agency was formed just in the year 2014. And yet it has proved its mettle in this field from the time of its inception. Also, UAE is already known for the world’s tallest skyscraper, deepest diving pool and largest shopping mall. Other than this, it also has an apparently unending series of larger-than-life ambitions meant to stimulate scientific and technological innovation in the country of 10 million people.