Watch: UAE astronaut AlNeyadi to come home fulfilled that he has done his part in inspiring the youth

In his pre-departure press conference from the ISS, he says his plan was to showcase life in space “in a simple way”


Angel Tesorero

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SUltan AlNeyadi with his Crew-6 colleagues during pre-departure press conference.
SUltan AlNeyadi with his Crew-6 colleagues during pre-departure press conference.

Published: Thu 24 Aug 2023, 6:25 PM

Last updated: Thu 24 Aug 2023, 7:07 PM

Few days before coming back to Earth, UAE astronaut Sultan AlNeyadi expressed his satisfaction of being able to accomplish one of his missions – that is, to inspire the youth.

AlNeyadi shared this during the Crew-6 pre-departure press conference on Wednesday night. AlNeyadi said his plan from Day 1 was to showcase life in space “in a simple way so that everyone can understand” their daily lives at the International Space Station (ISS).

One reporter observed how AlNeyadi has been actively interacting with the youth the past six months and was asked if he felt fulfilled inspiring them. The Emirati astronaut answered: “Absolutely!”

He then shared how his mission is igniting the curiosity of the youth in the region, which previously stopped going to space. AlNeyadi said: “I came from a region where space flight stopped for more than 30 years. (Prince Sultan bin Salman Al Saud of Saudi Arabia flew in US Space Shuttle in 1985 while Syrian astronaut Muhammed Faris made a space flight in 1987, as part of a joint Syrian-Soviet mission).

“Two came from the region before and then we stopped… My mission is a continuation of the UAE Space Programme of sending astronauts to space that started in 2019 with Hazza AlMansouri,” added AlNeyadi, who noted his activities aboard the ISS are providing scientific answers to the curiosity of the youth in the region.

AlNeyadi is scheduled to return to Earth on September 1. He accomplished the first spacewalk for the Arab world outside the ISS and conducted several experiments and scientific studies on how microgravity affects the human body, in collaboration with UAE universities and international space agencies.

Hot cup of coffee

The free-wheeling news conference also tackled various topics including what AlNeaydi and his Crew-6 colleagues – Nasa astronauts Stephen Bowen and Woody Hoburg, and Roscosmos cosmonaut Andrey Fedyaev – will do and are looking forward to when they return to Earth.

For AlNeyadi, it will be a hot cup of coffee that he is looking forward to have, aside of course, primarily reuniting with his family.

Bowen would like to breathe a nice ocean air and spend a day at a peaceful calm sea. Hoburg wants a real shower and Fedyaev, a fine bed where he can finally lay on his back and move from side to side.

Best moments

Hoburg and AlNeyadi, who both completed their first spacewalk, said their EVA (extra-vehicular activities) were the best moments of their lives at ISS. While Fedyaev said it was the day when docked on the ISS on March 3.

Space photographer

AlNeyadi, who has always been active on social media sharing his photos from space, also revealed his photography hacks. He said there are three things to keep in mind: planning, patience, and technique.


Astronauts like AlNeyadi were given training on various camera equipment. But to take great pictures from an orbiting space laboratory that goes around the world every 90 minutes, you need to have proper planning, patience, and technique to make it easier to take pictures of specific locations on Earth, AlNeyadi explained.

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