UAE EMA Mission to Send Craft to the Asteroid Belt27th Jun 2023
The UAE recently found significant success with its “Hope” Mars probe. This craft was designed to shed light on Mars and what the environment would have been like when it could theoretically have supported life. The Hope probe was a huge success for the Arab world, becoming its first successful mission to another planet. The UAE’s new effort, the EMA Mission, looks to build on that success.
EMA Mission in brief
The new mission brief is now known; the UAE Space Agency and University of Colorado Boulder will aim to send an unmanned spacecraft to the asteroid belt in the next five years.
The mission takes its name from the Emirates Mission to the Asteroid Belt (EMA). It will see a craft fly to the belt and then study six specific asteroids as it approaches one final target, 269 Justitia, which it will reach in 2034. This asteroid is thought to contain tholins, which are red organic compounds.
The two-ton spacecraft will be named the MBR Explorer after the UAE Prime Minister and royal head of Dubai, Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum.
This is one of the most ambitious missions to come out of the Arab world. It will visit the asteroids 10253 Westerwald, 623 Chimaera, 13294 Rockox, 88055, 23871, 59980, during a journey that will cover five billio kilometre journey.
The Space Agency has recently received credit for their collaborative work with other nations as well as their employment of incredible female scientists and space professionals.
Asteroids are increasingly in focus on the part of space agencies as well as academia and commercial companies. From understanding our solar system to exploring the possibility of mining operations, the rise of New Space industries gives us the opportunity to examine these relics of the creation of the planets.