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Rocket with UAE's Mars probe rolled out to launch pad

Sahim Salim/Dubai
Filed on July 19, 2020 | Last updated on July 19, 2020 at 12.43 pm
UAE Mars Hope probe, rocket, Tanegashima Space Centre, H-IIA F42
Supplied photo

After being delayed twice due to foul weather in Japan, the probe is scheduled to take off at 1.58am on Monday.

With hours left for the UAE's historic mission to Mars to take off, the rocket that will carry the Hope probe to space has arrived at its launch pad at Japan's Tanegashima Space Centre.

"H-IIA F42 has arrived at the launch pad. The launch vehicle is going to be connected to the pad facilities," its operator Mitsubishi Heavy Industries tweeted on Sunday.


The rocket mounted on a mobile launcher carrying its precious cargo was moved 500 metres from the Vehicle Assembly Building to the launch pad in a process that took about 30 minutes.

The decision for the launch vehicle roll-out came after a weather assessment.

Rocket with UAE's Mars probe rolled out to launch pad (KT24849719.PNG)

After being delayed twice due to foul weather in Japan, the probe is scheduled to take off at 1.58am on Monday.

An Emirati launch team in Japan and 21 engineers from the UAE Space Agency and MBRSC stationed at the mission control room in Dubai's Al Khawaneej are overseeing the launch process.

They got some much needed motivation as the UAE leaders called in on Saturday to review the probe's pre-flight preparations.

Rocket with UAE's Mars probe rolled out to launch pad (KT24850719.PNG)

The Arab world's first interplanetary mission will see the Hope probe travel 495 million km with a cruise speed of 121,000km/hr to reach the Red Planet in February next year. It will provide the first truly global picture of the Martian atmosphere.

sahim@khaleejtimes.com


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