The UAE has taken a giant leap towards landing the Arab world’s first rover on the Moon. The Emirates Lunar Mission team has completed the assembly and integration of the first prototype of the Rashid rover.
The Mohammed Bin Rashid Space Centre (MBRSC) shared a video showing the team developing and testing the rover.
The team has also completed the functional testing of the prototype at the MBRSC laboratories. They are now preparing for “robust testing” of the rover in simulated space and lunar environments.
Named after the late Sheikh Rashid bin Saeed Al Maktoum, former Ruler of Dubai, the rover is scheduled to be launched in the fourth quarter of 2022. Initially, the scheduled year for the launch was 2024.
The rover will be launched onboard a Space X Falcon 9 rocket from Florida, US.
Weighing only 10kg and with just four wheels, the small rover would be tasked to help the experts better understand how lunar dust and rocks vary across the Moon. It will send data and images back to Earth, using two high-resolution cameras: Microscopic, and thermal imaging ones.
The rover will explore "areas of the Moon that have not been reached by previous missions", His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, had said as he announced the mission.
The UAE will be the fourth country to explore the Moon, and the first from the Arab world.
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