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LIVE: Inside Hope Mars Mission control room in Dubai – News

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Khaleej Times brings you the live updates from the historic launch.

We are just hours away from making space history when, at 01.58.14 on July 20, the #FirstArabicCountdown will launch the Arab world’s first interplanetary mission. The UAE’s Hope Probe will lift off from Japan’s Tanegashima Space Centre on the H-IIA F42 rocket.


With boots on the ground (our journalists are already at the Mission Control in Dubai’s Al Khawaneej) Khaleej Times brings you live updates of history as it unfolds.


10.01: Excited about this huge undertaking, says UAE minister

The UAE’s Mars mission is a huge undertaking and there is a lot of excitement around its launch, a UAE minister has said.

LIVE: Inside Hope Mars Mission control room in Dubai (KT24857719.PNG)

Talking to journalists at the Hope Mars Mission control room in Dubai’s Al Khawaneej, Omar bin Sultan Al Olama, Minister of State for Artificial Intelligence, Digital Economy and Remote Work Applications, said: “There are three countries aiming for Mars this year – the US, China and the UAE. Despite being the newcomer, the UAE’s mission is at par with countries that actually have a legacy in the space sector. We are excited to see the outcomes with regards to the human capital of this programme. Everybody who has been a part of this programme has had great contributions to engineering and technology.”


9.50pm: Inside Hope Mars Mission control room in Dubai

This is the Hope Mars Mission control room in Dubai’s Al Khawaneej where 21 engineers from the UAE Space Agency and Mohammed bin Rashid Space Centre are stationed.

LIVE: Inside Hope Mars Mission control room in Dubai (KT24856719.PNG)

The ground station will guide the Hope probe towards the Red Planet and maintain its contact with Earth. The team will monitor Hope and take control of the probe – right from the moment it separates from its rocket an hour after its launch until it reaches the Martian orbit.

In the first 30 days, the engineers will be doing round-the-clock shifts to record every data the probe generates. The team will also ensure that the probe’s solar panels capture enough energy to power its batteries for the 495,000,000km journey to Mars.


9.09pm: Burj Khalifa lights up with #FirstArabicCountdown

Burj Khalifa, the world’s tallest building, has lit up with a countdown in Arabic to celebrate the launch of the UAE’s Hope probe to Mars.

The stunning show on the world’s largest LED screen featured a male voice doing the countdown in Arabic.

It then cuts into an animated video showing the rocket launch that will take Hope to space.


8.49pm: Hope probe launch team can see ‘Mars well’ 

The Emirates Mars Mission launch team on the ground at Japan’s Tanegashima Space Centre can see Mars “well tonight”.

Mitsubishi Heavy Industries Launch Services tweeted that the terminal countdown operation is proceeding smoothly as planned. A terminal countdown is a simulation of the final hours of a launch countdown.

8.39pm: Radio signals working fine

Mitsubishi Heavy Industries Launch Services that’s operating the H-IIA F42 rocket has said that the radio frequency system between the rocket and the ground stations has been checked. 


8.33pm:  Hope probe’s journey from Earth to Martian orbit explained

The Hope Mars Mission team has shared a video in which Mohsen Al Awadhi, mission systems engineer, explains how the Hope probe will reach its Martian orbit.

This is the brief explanation he gave: The launch vehicle from Japan’s Tanegashima Space Centre will take the probe to space. After separation, the Hope probe will be turned on for the first time. The team on the ground will hear the first signal soon after. The solar panels on the probe will be deployed and it will then look for the sun to charge its batteries. The seven-month journey to Mars then begins.


8.01pm: Rocket fully loaded with fuel
The tanks of the H-IIA F42 rocket that will take the Hope probe to space has been fully fuelled up, its operator has tweeted.


6.37pm: All devices working fine

Mitsubishi Heavy Industries Launch Services that’s operating the H-IIA F42 rocket has said that all devices for flight altitude control are working as expected.



 





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