Emirati astronaut

Emirati astronaut to take part in Mars mission

The Mohammed bin Rashid Space Centre (MBRSC) has revealed the identity of an Emirati astronaut who will take part in the next phase of a key Nasa simulation aimed at replicating the conditions of a mission to Mars.

According to a statement from MBRSC, Sharif Al Romaiti, a pilot with more than 16 years of experience in the aviation industry, including having more than 9,000 flight hours on several Airbus and Boeing aircraft, will take part in the project, which will begin on 10 May.

As previously reported, the mission will involve astronaut doubles – crew members who work in simulated conditions on Earth. The main goal of the project is to test the effects of a space mission of this magnitude on the human body and mind.

As part of the Human Exploration Research Analogue (Hera) project, Mr Al Romaithi will spend 45 days with other crew members in a specially equipped facility in Houston, Texas. Hera is a three-story habitat that provides the isolation, confinement and remoteness typical of spaceflight.

“We are delighted to announce the selection of Sharif Al Romaiti for the second phase of the Hera habitat-based programme, marking another significant step towards realising the UAE’s vision for space exploration,” said Salem Al Marri, CEO of MBRSC. – “This mission, which combines scientific research and international collaboration with Nasa, is designed to further our understanding of the physiological and psychological challenges of long-duration space travel through experiments conducted here on Earth.

“The knowledge gained from these Earth-based experiments will play an important role in preparing humanity for the next giant leap – travelling to Mars and beyond. The UAE is honoured to be part of this journey and we will continue to push the boundaries of what is possible and inspire future generations to participate in the development of the space industry,” added Mr Al Marri.  

Source: The National

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