Abu Dhabi, UAESaturday 14 December 2019

Hazza Al Mansouri is back on Earth - but historic mission goes on

The UAE's first astronaut is undergoing medical tests to examine the effects of space travel on the human body

Hazza Al Mansouri is undergoing medical tests in Moscow, almost a week after his return to Earth. Courtesy Dubai Media Office
Hazza Al Mansouri is undergoing medical tests in Moscow, almost a week after his return to Earth. Courtesy Dubai Media Office

The UAE's first astronaut might have come back down to Earth but his scientific mission is far from over.

Hazza Al Mansouri, who returned from eight days aboard the International Space Station last Thursday, is currently undergoing medical tests at the Yuri Gagarin Cosmonaut Training Centre in Moscow.

Dr Hanan Al Suwaidi, the flight surgeon, is following up on the effects of microgravity and space travel on the human body.

Yousuf Hamad Al Shaibani, director-general of the Mohammed bin Rashid Space Centre, said the tests are a key part of Maj Al Mansouri's historic achievement.

"Carrying on with the medical studies is an important part of the UAE’s first manned mission to space," said Mr Al Shaibani.

"Through the work of the UAE Astronaut Programme team and in partnership with the global agencies, we ensure the success of the scientific mission, which will add new and important data to the global scientific community about the impact of space missions on human beings."

Tests on the former fighter pilot include sensory adaptation, balance and time perception and changes in heart rate between Earth and space.

"The experiments Hazza is undergoing now are part of his scientific mission which started before his flight to ISS," said Salem Al Marri, the UAE Astronaut Programme manager.

"He is going through a number of medical checks to study the effects of space flights on humans. The objective is to find answers to questions posed by the scientific community."

"Hazza is in good health and high morale. His mission continues [and] he will be sharing his experience with a number of academic and scientific entities."

Maj Al Mansoori conducted 16 scientific experiments during his time on the ISS.

Maj Al Mansouri's momentous mission was lauded by Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the Armed Forces.

“Praise be to God for Hazza Al Mansouri's safe return to Earth after visiting the International Space Station.

“Congratulations to the people of the UAE for this historic achievement. Zayed's sons will fulfil our ambition to reach Mars.”

Updated: October 9, 2019 04:16 PM

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