The United Arab Emirates Space Agency, UAESA, has signed a Declaration of Principles with Bahrain’s National Space Science Agency, NSSA, and the UAE’s Khalifa University, for the Training of the Bahrain Space Team, Emirates News Agency WAM reported.
The signing took place on the sidelines of the 5th Bahrain International Airshow, held at the Sakhir Air Base in Bahrain between 14th and 16th November, 2018, under the patronage of His Majesty King Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa, King of Bahrain.
The document was signed by Dr. Ahmad Belhoul Al Falasi, Minister of State for Higher Education and Advanced Skills and Chairman of the UAE Space Agency, and Kamal Bin Ahmed Mohammed, Minister of Transportation and Telecommunications and responsible for supervising Bahrain's NSSA. The signing was attended by Dr. Mohamed Nasser Al Ahbabi, Director-General of the UAE Space Agency, Dr. Mohamed Ebrahim Al Aseeri, CEO of the NSSA, and a number of senior officials and engineers from all parties.
As outlined in the declaration, the parties will collaborate in training the Bahrain space team in satellite technology, design, construction, testing, launching, operations, and control, in addition to cooperating to build a CubeSat to be used for scientific research and carrying out a number of environmental studies.
Dr. Ahmad Belhoul Al Falasi said: “The signing of this declaration is a tangible result of the close relationship between the UAE and Bahrain in the arena of advanced sciences and will see us working together as strategic partners in the region’s nascent but rapidly developing space sector. The ties between our two nations already extend across the political, economic, social, and cultural domains and we have now added the exciting field of space to that inventory. Our growing collaboration in space science and exploration is a testament to our desire and commitment to bolster meaningful partnerships between our two great nations.”
“The UAE space sector has reached an advanced stage that now sees it able to transfer knowledge to valued partners in the region. Our growing expertise in the field of space science, research, exploration and telecommunications, is exemplified by the number of ambitious space programs and initiatives launched by the UAE. These include the UAE Astronaut Program, the Emirates Mars Mission’s Hope Probe project, Mars Scientific City, and last month’s placing in orbit of KhalifaSat - an advanced piece of sophisticated technology that was designed and built entirely by Emirati engineers,” Al Falasi added.
“We are delighted to have signed this Declaration of Principles between the NSSA, the UAESA, and Khalifa University. First of all, I would like to thank my compatriot Dr. Ahmad Belhoul Al Falasi and the executive management of the UAE Space Agency for their efforts and constructive cooperation which has resulted in the signing of this declaration. This represents a significant step towards fulfilling the goals of the NSSA, in line with our strategic plans,” said Eng. Kamal Bin Ahmed Mohammed.
“We are looking forward to creating a skilled Bahraini team, familiar with the latest satellite technologies, and continuing to train them to expand their knowledge in this field. Such expertise will ensure the sustainability of NSSA projects and will provide a solid base of skilled technicians in this field. We would like to thank our compatriots in the UAE for their cooperation and consistent support. We look forward to continuing to collaborate to the benefit and prosperity of both our countries,” he added.
Dr. Mohamed Nasser Al Ahbabi said: “Cooperation between the UAE Space Agency and Bahrain’s NSSA dates back several years, at a time when the space sector in both our countries witnessed unprecedented growth, prompted by significant government support. With the signing of this declaration, cooperation between our two countries will expand further. We will work to exchange expertise, experience, and information related to the space sector to realize our mutual objectives and interests.”
The strong UAE participation at the airshow, alongside Saudi Arabia and Kuwait, is indicative of the long-standing relationships between the neighboring nations. Fourteen UAE companies specializing in aviation, space and defense took part in the airshow.