Dubai, UAE: The Mohammed Bin Rashid Space Centre (MBRSC) today announced the extension of its Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Italy’s Thales Alenia Space and ALTEC, the Aerospace Logistics Technology Engineering Company to continue identifying opportunities to study and develop solutions for space and planetary exploration systems. The extended MoU, initially signed on 26th October 2021, now extends the partnership for an additional two  years.

The amendment agreement was officially signed by H.E. Salem Humaid AlMarri, Director General of MBRSC, and Hervé Derrey, President and CEO of Thales Alenia Space, and Vincenzo Giorgio, CEO of Altec, at MBRSC’s booth at the Dubai Airshow 2023 being held at Dubai World Central (DWC).

H.E. Salem Humaid AlMarri, Director General of MBRSC, said, “This extended collaboration with Thales Alenia Space and ALTEC is more than a continuation of our shared journey; it is a strategic acceleration in furthering collaborative achievements in space exploration. As we look to the future, our combined efforts will focus on groundbreaking initiatives, including missions, advanced systems, and cutting-edge space technology. This partnership not only reinforces our commitment to space innovation but also exemplifies the UAE's role as a key player in the global space arena.”

Hervé Derrey, President and CEO of Thales Alenia Space, said, “The extension of the MoU with MBRSC provides new opportunities to cooperate on space exploration projects. Thales Alenia Space has a unique expertise, recognized on a global scale, in Low Earth Orbit to Moon, Mars and beyond to reveal the universe’ secrets.”

The areas of collaboration under the extended MoU include the development of interplanetary missions, rover system design and integration, and the implementation of advanced terrestrial analogous systems. Furthermore, the partnership will continue to support higher education activities and the development of sophisticated exploration systems, marking a significant contribution to the global space exploration efforts.


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MBRSC is an advanced scientific and technological hub, responsible for making the UAE a world leader in space services and exploration.

Established in 2006, the Mohammad Bin Rashid Space Centre (MBRSC) started out with five engineers, who took it upon themselves to develop their capabilities and expand their knowledge in the field of space, relying on strong will and solid determination. Since then, the centre has continued its journey to be the incubator of the “UAE National Space Programme”. The MBRSC is home to the UAE Satellite Programme, UAE Astronaut Programme, Mars 2117 Programme and Emirates Mars Mission, among others. Under its satellite programme, the Centre has built, developed, and operated several Earth observation satellites, including DubaiSat-1, DubaiSat-2 and KhalifaSat, the first satellite that was fully built by Emiratis in 2018. The Centre is currently developing the MBZ-SAT, which is expected to be launched in 2024 and will be the latest in the field of high-resolution imaging from outer space. Under the UAE Astronaut Programme, MBRSC currently has four astronauts, two of who have undertaken missions to the International Space Station, including the recently concluded longest Arab space mission completed by Sultan AlNeyadi. The Mars 2117 Programme includes the Emirates Lunar Mission, Analog Mission and Space Venture.