Dubai The UAE National Space Agency announced Sunday that the Emirati “Al-Amal” probe sent its first image of Mars, a few days after it successfully entered the orbit of the Red Planet.
“The UAE mission to Mars took a picture of Olympus Mons, the largest volcano in the solar system, which appears in the light of the early morning sun,” a statement said.
The image was taken from an altitude of 24,700 km above the surface of Mars last Wednesday, the day after the probe was installed in the orbit of Mars, according to a statement.
Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, the UAE prime minister and ruler of Dubai, shared the color photo in a tweet.
He wrote next to the photo, “The first image of Mars was taken by the first Arab probe in history.”
The mission is designed to uncover the secrets of Mars’ climate, but the UAE also wants to inspire the region’s youth.
“Hope” became the first of three spacecraft to reach the red planet, after China and the United States launched missions in July, using a period during which the Earth and Mars approached.
The Emirati mission also aims to celebrate the fiftieth anniversary of the unification of the seven emirates that make up the state.
“Hope” will remain in the orbit of the Red Planet for at least one Martian year, or 687 Earth days, using three scientific tools to analyze the Martian atmosphere.
More information is set to start sending to Earth in September 2021, with the data available to scientists around the world.