The United Arab Emirates’ martian probe ‘Hope’ – the Arab nation’s first interplanetary mission – is scheduled to reach the Red Planet in February, the ruler of Dubai, Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, has announced.

The probe, which was launched on July 19, has since covered 290 million kilometers through space, Sheikh Mohammed, who is also the UAE’s vice-president and prime minister, said on Twitter.

The operations team has been making another change to the craft’s course and it’s expected to reach Mars at 7:42pm on February 9, 2021, which will become “a great day for us, and all Arabs,” he said.

The Hope probe has completed its last trajectory correction maneuver after travelling 290 million km into space in 111 days. We officially announce Hope probe will arrive to Mars on Feb. 9, 2021 at 7:42pm UAE timing. We will celebrate the arrival of the first Arab mission to Mars

The Hope probe was developed by the UAE in collaboration with several US universities and is now controlled by the specialists at the Mohammed Bin Rashid Space Centre (MBRSC) in Dubai.

بعد مرور ١١١ يوم على انطلاق رحلة مسبار الأمل نحو المريخ والتي قطعت ٢٩٠ مليون كم .. أجرى مسبار الأمل اليوم آخر تعديل في مساره.. ونعلن اليوم تاريخ الوصول الدقيق للكوكب الأحمر ٩-٢-٢٠٢١ بإذن الله تمام الساعة ٧:٤٢ دقيقة مساء .. سيكون لنا عيداً.. وللعرب ..

After entering Mars’ orbit, the device will switch into science mode. It’s tasked with creating a comprehensive picture of the Red Planet’s atmosphere for the period of one Martian year, equivalent to two years on Earth.

The spacecraft is designed to monitor Mars from above the planet using an infrared spectrometer, an ultraviolet spectrometer and a camera. The orbiter will study the atmospheric condition and record climate change on the Red Planet, among other things.

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