The project has been delayed due to the coronavirus pandemic, as staff will be required to quarantine after arriving in Japan, where the Mars orbiter will be launched from.

The United Arab Emirates’ hopes of participating in a Mars exploration mission remain alive after it was announced that an orbiter, which has been developed to explore the planet, will be shipped to its launch site in Japan later this week, after approval from local authorities.

The orbiter that will be used for the mission initially passed safety tests in the USA in December 2019, before being shipped back to the UAE, but as engineers and astronauts will need to complete quarantine as a safety precaution upon arrival in Japan due to the threat of the Coronavirus, the eventual launch date however remains uncertain, but it has initially been scheduled for July.

Read more…