Emirates Arabes Unies
Abou Dabi, Ajman, Charjah, Dubai, Fujairah, Ras el Khaimah, Oumm al Qaiwain.
Khalifa ben Zayed Al Nahyane
vice president et Emir de Dubai
Mohammed ben Rachid Al Maktoum
The UAESA – which directs UAE national space programs, creates space policy and regulation, and supports the development of UAE engineers and scientists – is expected to generate significant benefits to the country’s economy and human capital. In October 2014, the agency gained membership in the International Space Exploration Coordination Group, making the UAE the first Arab country to join. It also signed collaboration agreements with NASA, Japan, and China, and memoranda of understanding with the U.K., Italy, and Russia.
Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid, Vice President of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, founded the Mohammed bin Rashid Space Centre (MBRSC) in 2015 when it was integrated with the existing Emirates Institution for Advanced Science & Technology (EIAST). According to the editor of Space Alert, Dr. Rajeswari Pillai Rajagopalan, in addition to the Mars Mission, the center is focused on building remote-sensing satellites with the objective of creating a fully autonomous and indigenous capability to design and manufacture satellites in the UAE the center has scientific laboratories and research facilities based in Dubai. In March 2016, the UAESA and MBRSC announced that they would use a Mitsubishi Heavy Industries rocket for the Mars mission. Mitsubishi will launch the UAE’s unmanned probe “Hope” into orbit from the Tanegashima Space Centre in July 2020. The Japanese company was chosen from 10 possible launch service providers across the globe.
Abu Dhabi-based Khalifa University opened its new Spacecraft Platform for Astronautic and Celestial Emulation (SPACE) laboratory in 2015. The SPACE lab is equipped with special Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAV’s), robots and sensing systems that help to mimic actual conditions in space. The lab provides students with an opportunity to conduct mission-oriented research, and get hands on experience in conducting experiments for sensing, guidance, dynamics, and control of aerospace and space operations in a suitable environment. In May 2015, the UAESA announced its plans to open the Middle East’s first space research center in Al Ain. The $27 million center – funded by the United Arab Emirates University (UAEU) and the Telecommunications Regulatory Authority (represented by the ICT Fund) – will be an incubator for development and innovation at the federal level. UAESA will also coordinate with several organizations on the project, including the Emirates Mobile Observatory. The center will serve university students as well as space operators, and will be open to people from outside the university as well. According to the UAE newspaper “Gulf News”, the center will serve as the main headquarters to support UAE’s unmanned Hope Probe for the 2020 Mars mission. One of the goals for the center is to attract and produce homegrown Emirati men and women space scientists. It is expected that the new facility will create an estimated 150 jobs for Emirati scientists and engineers who will be needed to work on the Mars mission.
The UAE has already launched and is controlling a number of satellites.
Yahsat, a subsidiary of the UAE Government-owned Mubadala Development, offers a range of communication services including voice, internet and television. Yahsat currently has two satellites in orbit and launched a third in 2018, the Al Yah 3 satellite. Al Yah 3 will extend Yahsat’s broadband services to 19 countries across Brazil and Africa.
The MBRSC operates several satellites:
DubaiSat-1 was the first fully UAE-owned satellite. It was launched in 2009 by EIAST, which, as noted above, was rolled into MBRSC in 2015
DubaiSat-2 blasted off in 2013 KhalifaSat, a remote sensing for Earth observation, was launched in October of 2018. requirement KhalifaSat is the UAE’s most technologically advanced imaging satellite, was 100 percent developed by Emirati engineers as part of the MBRSC’s strategic initiative to inspire innovation and technological advancement, and to increase sustainable development in the UAE. The UAE Institution for Advanced Science and Technology (EIAST) in collaboration with Satrec Initiative (SI), a South Korean satellite manufacturing company, oversee the KhalifaSat program.