The United Arab Emirates and Russia here today signed a cooperation agreement to send the first UAE astronaut to participate in scientific research in a Russian space mission to the International Space Station aboard the Soyuz MS spacecraft.
UAE Vice President, Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum said that sending the first UAE astronaut to space is a historic step towards the beginning of a new phase in which the Emirates vision of space will be completed, Saudi Press Agency reported Wednesday.
The Soyuz-MS is the latest revision of the Soyuz spacecraft. It is an evolution of the Soyuz TMA-M spacecraft, with modernization mostly concentrated on the communications and navigation subsystems.
In the second manned launch of 2018, the Soyuz MS-09 spacecraft is carrying three members of Expedition 56 and 57 to the International Space Station, ISS. Russian cosmonaut Sergei Prokopiev, ESA astronaut Alexander Gerst and NASA astronaut Serena Auñón-Chancellor lifted off from Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan on June 6, 2018, for a long-duration shift aboard the orbiting outpost. It is the 55th flight of the Soyuz spacecraft series to the ISS, denoted in the outpost's official flight manifest as 55S, Russian Spaceweb reported earlier this month.