Hazzaa Al Mansoori will make history when he journeys to the International Space Station later this year…

The Mohammed bin Rashid Space Centre (MBRSC) has announced that Hazza Al Mansoori is the chosen astronaut and Sultan Al Neyadi will be the back-up for the mission to the International Space Station in September 2019.

Both astronauts are currently undergoing grueling training in Russia to prepare them for the journey to space. The eight-day mission to the International Space Station will see Al Mansoori board a Soyuz-MS 15 spacecraft from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan on September and return to Earth aboard a Soyuz-MS 12.

Salem Al Marri, Assistant Director General for Science and Technology Sector and Head of the UAE Astronaut Programme said, “Al Mansoori and Al Neyadi are both undergoing the training to ensure that they are ready to travel to the International Space Station. Al Mansoori is undergoing his training with the prime team, while Al Neyadi is undergoing his training with the backup team. Each team consists of three astronauts.”

In a tweet HH Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai said, “With Hazza Al Mansoori and Sultan Al Neyadi, the Arab world’s first astronauts to the International Space Station. They carry the dreams of our founding fathers, the ambitions of our people, and inspire our youth to raise their aspirations to the sky.”

Al Mansoori began as one of 4,022 candidates hoping to become the first Emirati astronaut in space back in 2017. As the first Arab astronaut to travel to the International Space Station, he will be presenting a tour in Arabic, in which he will explain the components of the station and the equipment on board.

He will also be conducting earth observation and imaging experiences, interacting with ground stations, sharing information, as well as documenting the daily lives of astronauts at the station, according to MBRSC.

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Images: Twitter