Humans have always been explorers, we’ve explored continents, continue exploring oceans and space. This instinct to explore is what drove Hazza Al Mansouri, the first Emirati astronaut to venture into space; and the UAE’s launch of the Hope probe, which is the first probe to provide a complete picture of the Martian atmosphere.
However, as the UAE delves further into exploring space, the question of why space exploration is important and how it benefits the country might arise.
How can space exploration benefit the UAE?
- Provides clear vision and encourages innovation:
The human instinct to explore and push the limits gives a sense of clear vision that drives technology and innovation forward by encouraging individuals to engage in science and engineering.
Nidhal Guessoum, an astrophysicist and professor at the American University of Sharjah in the UAE said: “Hope (probe) means that we turn away from the conflicts and focus on human and economic development.”
- Economic Growth:
Space exploration supports economic prosperity as it introduces a new industry and creates numerous jobs that did not previously exist. This is evident in how the MBRSC (Mohammad bin Rashid Space Centre) created jobs for young UAE nationals.
- Generates hope for the future:
"Today I am really glad that the children in the Emirates will wake up on the morning of the 20th of July having an anchor project of their own, having a new reality, having new possibilities, allowing them to further contribute and to create a larger impact on the world." – Her Excellency Sarah Al Amiri, the science lead on the Hope probe.
Sarah Al Amiri’s words showcase the most valuable benefit of space exploration that the UAE will experience – hope for the future. Generations of Emiratis and UAE residents who grow up seeing the UAE’s progress in exploring space will be motivated to study science, technology and engineering.