UAE eyes more satellite launches in the coming year: space agency official

The UAE Space Agency highlighted its successes since 2014, during the fourth anniversary celebrations at Abu Dhabi’s Dusit Thani Hotel on 12 July 2018.

The Agency highlighted that through its ambitious and futuristic space programmes the UAE aims to tap the potential of the young minds of the nation.

During the event, The UAE Space Agency is aiming to transform the country as a hub for space education, said Dr Mohammed Al Ahbabi, director-general of the UAE Space Agency, also noted that they are focused on making the UAE a hub for space education and making satellites.

“We work with universities to establish facilities in terms of research and development. We established three space research centres – the biggest with the UAE University with investment of around AED 100 million,” said Al Ahbabi.

“We send students abroad for training, sponsor bright students and try to encourage our universities to provide space degrees. We are working with four universities to offer this and have students coming from abroad to study space science.”

Al Ahbabi then stated that two extra satellites have been additionally going to be launched this 12 months, together with KhalifaSat — which has been constructed and designed within the UAE by a full workforce of Emirati engineers.

“Next year, we will have at least three satellites. Space agency is working on four satellites with universities and one imaging and climate change satellite with the French Space Agency.”

He then added that the UAE’s ambitious 2020 Emirates Mars Mission is on schedule.

“It is unusual for space projects to be on track,” he said. “The Emirates Mars Mission is on track – on time and within budget – which is amazing but still we are worried. But all the projects are as per plan.”

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