UAE astronaut Hazzaa al-Mansoori to set off on history-making space voyage today
In just a few short hours, Hazza Al Mansouri is about to become the first Emirati astronaut to leave the earth's atmosphere and make his foray into the final frontier — space.
He will spend eight days aboard the International Space Station. He will also take a few items from the UAE to space. Seeds will be sent to space as an experiment to see how they react in space, as well their ability to absorb water in a weightless environment.
The project is also to see if potentially in the future, planting the seeds in space would be possible.
Mansouri is part of the launch of Soyuz MS-15, and his team includes US astronaut Jessica Meir and Roscosmos commander Oleg Skripochka from Russia.
He will make history as the first Emirati astronaut and the first Arab on the orbiting laboratory to ISS at 5.56pm Dubai time.
Quite an unreal feeling to gaze up at the actual @roscosmos #Soyuz engines that will ferry us to space. Photo1: 1st stage engines, 2: 3rd stage (once these engines cut off we’ll be in space headed to @Space_Station) T-4 days to launch! pic.twitter.com/F0Baij9vkt— Jessica Meir (@Astro_Jessica) September 21, 2019
Having already launched the first Emirati satellite, ‘KhalifaSat’ into space in October, the Gulf nation is developing their space programme – which includes launching a Mars probe in 2020.