UAE launched on Tuesday a $136 million space simulation city over 1.9 million square feet, which will provide a viable and realistic model to simulate living on the surface of Mars.
The project was unveiled at the annual meetings of the UAE government in Abu Dhabi chaired by Vice President, Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, and Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan.
The Mars Science City project falls within UAE’s objectives to lead the global scientific race to take people to Mars and is part of the Mars 2117 Strategy, launched during the fifth World Government Summit.
A team of Emirati scientists, engineers, and designers, led by a team from the Mohammed bin Rashid Space Centre and Dubai Municipality, will carry out the project, in cooperation with international architects of Bjarke Ingels.
The city will consist of several domes, with innovative construction techniques providing support for the structures. It encompasses laboratories for food, energy, and water, as well as agricultural testing and studies about food security in the future.
The science city will also boast a museum that displays humanity’s greatest space achievements, including educational areas meant to engage young citizens with space, and inspire in them a passion for exploration and discovery.
It also seeks to attract the best scientific minds from around the world in a collaborative contribution in the UAE to human development and the improvement of life.
At the meetings, Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid said, "UAE seeks to establish international efforts to develop technologies that benefit humankind, and that establish the foundation of a better future for more generations to come. We also want to consolidate the passion for leadership in science in the UAE, contributing to improving life on earth and to developing innovative solutions to many of our global challenges."
Bin Rashid stated that the new project is another step in UAE’s leading contributions to the global science movement, adding that the government seeks to set an example and motivation for others to participate and contribute, to humanity’s march into space.
While, Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed said, "We have great confidence in our national work teams, and Emirates Mars Mission prove that our youth are trustworthy and capable of achieving national ambitions."
UAE government annual meetings are being held on September 26 and 27, with attendance by over 450 dignitaries, heads of executives boards through the UAE, ministers, heads of federal government bodies, heads of local government agencies, local directors and executives.
The meetings seek to follow up on the objectives and results achieved in the UAE Vision 2021 strategy, which aims to make see the UAE become among the best countries in the world in various fields by 2021.
The meetings are considered a platform for the largest gathering of its kind for both local and federal levels.
They are an opportunity to discuss the challenges and opportunities in national development and to focus government action in various sectors by creating plans, programmes, and policies, as well as harmonizing these initiatives, on the path toward UAE Centennial 2071.