Sharjah, UAE: His Highness Dr. Sheikh Sultan bin Mohammed Al Qasimi, member of the Federal Supreme Council and Ruler of Sharjah, today received Emirati astronauts Sultan AlNeyadi, Hazzaa AlMansoori, and the team from the Mohammed Bin Rashid Space Centre (MBRSC), in the presence of His Highness Sheikh Sultan bin Ahmed bin Sultan Al Qasimi, Deputy Ruler of Sharjah at the Sharjah Academy for Astronomy, Space Sciences, and Technology (SAASST).

H.H. Dr. Sheikh Sultan bin Mohammed Al Qasimi after welcoming the gathering commended the remarkable achievements of the longest Arab space mission and praised the dedication of astronauts AlNeyadi and AlMansoori for their instrumental roles in bolstering the UAE's position as a space exploration leader. He celebrated their commitment and the MBRSC team's excellence throughout the mission, reflecting the UAE's dedication to global excellence and the resilience of its people.

H.H. Dr. Sheikh Sultan bin Mohammed Al Qasimi was briefed on the historic longest Arab space mission's outcomes by AlNeyadi, who spent six months onboard the International Space Station (ISS), conducting pivotal scientific research and experiments as well as the first Arab spacewalk.

AlMansoori, who was the first Arab increment lead for Expedition 69, also briefed His Highness about his role during the mission, which included supporting AlNeyadi and his fellow crew members in coordinating experiments, daily tasks and other activities on the ISS from the Mission Control Center in Houston.

Expressing gratitude, Al Neyadi presented the UAE flag, which accompanied him on his ISS mission, to H.H. Dr. Sheikh Sultan bin Mohammed Al Qasimi, as a token of his unwavering support and interest in space science and education.

The MBRSC team, led by H.E. Hamad Obaid AlMansoori, Chairman, MBRSC, H.E. Yousuf Hamad AlShaibani, Vice Chairman, MBRSC and H.E. Salem Humaid AlMarri, Director General, MBRSC, along with mission team members, expressed their profound gratitude towards His Highness Dr. Sheikh Sultan bin Mohammed Al Qasimi, acknowledging his unwavering support. The team also discussed the UAE Astronaut Programme and shed light on its future missions.

H.E. Hamad Obaid AlMansoori, Chairman, MBRSC said, "The support and vision of His Highness Dr. Sheikh Sultan bin Mohammed Al Qasimi have been instrumental in realising the dreams of numerous Emirati endeavours. Our meeting with His Highness is a testament to our nation's dedication to exploring new frontiers in space. With strategic planning and keeping pace with the evolving space sector, we are committed to nurturing our national talent and shaping the future of space exploration. Inspired by the legacy of our nation's founders, we are energised to achieve new heights in space science and exploration."

H.E. Salem Humaid AlMarri, Director General, MBRSC said, "We extend our deepest gratitude to His Highness Dr. Sheikh Sultan bin Mohammed Al Qasimi for his visionary leadership and direction as we navigate the future course of the UAE's space sector. The successful mission led by Sultan marks a significant milestone in MBRSC's history, setting the stage for a series of ambitious space missions. Looking forward to our goals, we are dedicated to constantly pushing the boundaries of innovation, exploration, and discovery in space."


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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.