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UAE Vice President Inspects First Arab-Built Satellite

UAE Vice President Inspects First Arab-Built Satellite

Saturday, 3 February, 2018 - 18:15
UAE Vice President and Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum. (Reuters)
Asharq Al-Awsat
Vice President and Prime Minister of the United Arab Emirates and Ruler of Dubai Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum inspected on Saturday the progress of the KhalifaSat project, which was built at the Mohammed bin Rashid Space Center (MBRSC), reported the Emirates News Agency (WAM).

KhalifaSat is the first satellite to be fully built by Emirati engineers, an achievement that highlights the UAE’s growing expertise in satellite technology. The satellite is set to be launched later this year, following a series of rigorous tests.

"Emirati engineers are the first in the Arab world to construct a satellite without foreign assistance. This is a major achievement that signifies the high level of capabilities UAE youth have acquired in space technologies," Sheikh Mohammed said while visiting MBRSC.

"The high level of expertise that Emirati scientists and engineers have developed creates a strong foundation for the future scientific and technological development of the UAE," he added according to WAM.

"We are confident that the nation’s space industry sector will continue its strong growth, and emerge as a key component of our economy. The development of KhalifaSat is not only a source of pride for Emiratis and Arabs, but also a global achievement that will benefit humanity, and offer scientific solutions for development globally," he further said.

Sheikh Mohammed was welcomed at MBRSC by Chairman of MBRSC Hamad Obaid Al Mansoori, Major General Talal Hamid Belhoul Al Falasi, and Director General of MBRSC Yousuf Al Shaibani, along with a number of senior executives of the Center.

He toured the Center and was briefed about the advanced features of KhalifaSat, which include enhanced digital camera, satellite positioning system, faster download and communication, automatic satellite control system, and advanced target positioning system.

Once the manufacture and rigorous testing phases have been completed, the satellite will be transported to Japan for launch aboard the Mitsubishi Heavy Industries rocket – H-IIA.

When placed into a Low Earth Orbit of approximately 613km, the satellite will proceed to capture detailed imagery capable of competing with the highest industry standards. The images beamed back to earth by KhalifaSat will be among the most detailed commercially available, with a GSD of 0.7m Panchromatic, and 2.98m GSD in four multispectral bands.

The KhalifaSat project, launched by Sheikh Mohammed in 2013, is part of MBRSC’s long-term strategy to encourage innovation, stimulate technological progress, promote sustainable development and create a generation of Emirati scientists and engineers who will contribute to a scientific renaissance and lead ambitious space projects over the next decade.

Once in orbit, KhalifaSat will provide detailed high-quality imagery for a variety of uses, allowing the UAE to provide competitive services across the world.

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