UAE’s Hope probe enters Martian Orbit: What the country aims to achieve with this mission

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February 12, 2021 6:11 PM

It was launched in July 2020, and was one of the three major missions taking off for the Red Planet in the month - the UAE, China and the US.

mars mission uae hope probeThis marked the first interplanetary mission carried out by UAE but its fourth overall space mission. (Representational image)

UAE Mars Mission: On Tuesday, the UAE became the first Arab country to successfully enter its probe into the orbit of Mars, after the Al-Amal or Hope probe launched seven months ago. This made the UAE only the fifth country to reach the orbit of the Red Planet, after Russia, the US, China and India. The mission has been in the works since July 2014, and it was developed by the country in collaboration with University of California in Berkeley, University of Colorado-Boulder and Arizona State University. This marked the first interplanetary mission carried out by UAE but its fourth overall space mission.

It was launched in July 2020, and was one of the three major missions taking off for the Red Planet in the month – the UAE, China and the US.

UAE Mars Mission: What it aims to achieve

According to a report in IE, the probe, which has now reached the Martian orbit, will orbit the Red Planet for one Martian year. A year on Mars lasts for about 687 Earth days. The main aim of the probe is to study the weather dynamics on Mars, looking at how oxygen and hydrogen escape into space due to weather changes, by correlating lower atmosphere and upper atmosphere. Studying the loss of hydrogen and oxygen would help scientists understand the reason behind Mars losing much of its liquid water and early atmosphere.

Before it can begin this though, the probe would spend the next two months to get into the final orbital position so that it can use all three of the instruments fitted on it to capture a complete view of the Red Planet and its atmosphere. This would be captured every nine days during the course of the orbiting mission.

The country is hoping to be the first to capture the complete portrait of the atmosphere of Mars, with this information helping scientists understand the climate dynamics of the planet and the different layers of its atmosphere. This would make the probe the first true weather satellite orbiting Mars, the country hopes.

However, this is not all. The country also hopes that the mission would inspire its youth to take up careers in science. Moreover, the UAE also has a long-term hope of establishing a settlement on the Red Planet by 2117 and the study of the weather dynamics would aid that long-term goal.

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