• MBRSC and NASA officials greet astronauts after arriving at Kennedy Space Center
  • The astronauts arrived at the Kennedy Space Center at 9.30 p.m. UAE time aboard a Gulfstream jet from their home base in Houston

Dubai, UAE: The team at Mohammed Bin Rashid Space Centre (MBRSC) and NASA welcomed Sultan AlNeyadi and the crew members of Crew-6 at the NASA Kennedy Space Center in Florida. The all-veteran crew of Crew-6 - Mission Specialist Sultan AlNeyadi, Mission Commander Stephen Bowen, Pilot Warren Hoburg, and Mission Specialist Andrey Fedyaev, jetted into NASA’s Kennedy Space Center on Tuesday for the final few days of rehearsals, and briefings before taking-off for a 6-month stint on the International Space Station.

The rehearsal will familiarise the astronauts with their day-of-launch timeline, which will see the crew suit up for their mission before heading to the pad.

The welcome ceremony witnessed the presence of H.E. Salem Humaid AlMarri, Director General, MBRSC, Kelvin Manning, Deputy Director, Kennedy Space Center, Dana Hutcherson, Deputy Manager, NASA’s Commercial Crew Program, Adnan Al Rais, Mission Manager – UAE Astronaut Mission 2, MBRSC and other senior officials.

Addressing the VIP guests and media, H.E. Salem Humaid AlMarri, Director General, MBRSC said, “The UAE Astronaut Programme was launched in 2017, and this is our second mission making the UAE the 11th country globally to launch a long-duration astronaut mission to the International Space Station. There is a big team from the Mohammed Bin Rashid Space Centre working for the success of this mission. We are ready and the astronauts are ready too.”

UAE astronaut and Crew-6 Mission Specialist Sultan AlNeyadi addressing the gathering, said, “It is a great honour to be here today, a few days before the launch of the first Arab long-duration astronaut mission and the UAE's second mission to the International Space Station. It is also a privilege to be standing on the same ground that the first man who landed on the Moon flew from.”

“After the success of the first UAE Mission in 2019, when my colleague Hazzaa AlMansoori flew to the International Space Station, we felt a boost in space enthusiasm in the UAE and all over the region. This 6-month mission will further enhance our space programme and we hope to successfully conduct this mission with our crew and come back fulfilling all the aims and goals that have been planned for it.”

The four astronauts are scheduled to launch on Monday at 10:45 a.m. UAE time aboard SpaceX’s Crew Dragon spacecraft.

Sultan further added, “I thank our leadership for their support and all those who helped us to prepare for this mission, including our trainers from all the space agencies, my family, as well as my colleagues and team. We are ready physically, mentally and technically for this mission, through which we aim to share knowledge and spread enthusiasm for space exploration.

For more information, visit - https://www.mbrsc.ae/service/astronaut_prog/


MBRSC Media Team - mbrsc@quillmena.com


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 has undertaken the tasks of building, developing, and operating a number of Earth observation satellites, providing imaging services, analysing and studying them, as well as producing relevant data to scientific communities and research centres around the world. Among the satellites that the centre operates are DubaiSat-1 & DubaiSat-2. The MBRSC is also responsible for KhalifaSat, celebrated as the first satellite that was fully built by Emiratis in 2018. Recently, the centre revealed its plan to develop the new satellite MBZ-SAT, which is expected to be launched at the end of 2023 and to be the latest in the field of high-resolution imaging from outer space.