The UAE's “Hope” probe sent its first image of Mars, a few days after successfully entering the orbit of the red planet, the national space agency announced on Sunday.
"The United Arab Emirates Mars Mission has captured the image of the largest volcano in the solar system, Olympus Mons, emerging in the light of the early morning sunlight," said a statement.
The image was captured from an altitude of 24.700 km above the Martian surface last Wednesday, the day after the probe was installed in the orbit of Mars, said in a statement.
Sheikh Mohamed bin Rashid Al-Maktoum, the Emirati Prime Minister and ruler of Dubai shared the color image in a tweet.
"First image of Mars captured by the first Arab probe in history," he wrote next to the photo.
This mission is designed to discover the secrets of the Martian climate, but the Emirates also want it to serve as an inspiration for the youth of the region.
"Hope" became the first of the three spacecraft to reach the red planet, after China and the United States launched missions in July, taking advantage of a period during which Earth and Mars are closer.
The Emirati mission also aims to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the unification of the seven emirates that make up the nation.
"Hope" will remain in the orbit of the red planet for at least one Martian year, that is, 687 Earth days, deploying three scientific instruments to analyze the Martian atmosphere.
It is scheduled to start sending more information back to Earth in September 2021, with the data available to scientists around the world./AFP