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Hope: UAE’s first mission to Mars

Topics Covered: Awareness in space.

Hope: UAE’s first mission to Mars

The launch of the United Arab Emirates’ (UAE) first mission to Mars is scheduled for July 16 launch. It will take off from its launch site, Tanegashima Space Center, in Japan.

 Why July launch matters?

  • The spacecraft must blast off from the Earth during a brief launch window in July, since Earth and Mars orbit the Sun at different rates and are aligned at their closest points only once every two years.

About the Hope mission:

Announced in 2015 with the aim of creating mankind’s first integrated model of the Red planet’s atmosphere.

The Hope mission is a Mars orbiter spacecraft, which will study the thin atmosphere of Mars.

  • The mission is officially named the Emirates Mars Mission (EMM) and the orbiter has been named Hope or ‘Al Amal’.

If successful, the Hope orbiter will join six others in studying Mars, from the US, Europe and India.

The Hope orbiter:

The Hope probe has a mission life of one Martian year, which is almost two Earth years.

The three main objectives of the Hope probe are:

  1. to understand the climate dynamics and global weather map of Mars by studying the lower atmosphere of Mars.
  2. to explain how the weather of Mars affects the escape of hydrogen and oxygen, by correlating conditions in the lower and upper atmosphere.
  3. to understand the presence and variability of hydrogen and oxygen in the upper atmosphere, and why Mars is losing these gases to space.

Significance of the mission:

  • It is a known fact that the Red Planet was once habitable, from signatures of flowing water and organic material that point to a past that could have supported living things.
  • An understanding of Mars’ past could help scientists understand the future of Earth.



Prelims Link:

Overview of:

  1. MAVEN.
  2. Mars Orbiter Mission.
  3. NASA’s curiosity and opportunity.
  4. ExoMars.
  5. Odyssey

Sources: Indian Express.