UAE plans first Arab spaceship to Mars in 7 years
The United Arab Emirates, already home to the world's tallest tower, is now reaching for the stars. The energy-rich country on the eastern tip of the Arabian Peninsula announced plans Wednesday to establish a space program to send the first Arab spaceship to Mars in 2021.If they approach this the same way they approached the tower - basically, throw dumptrucks full of money at the best and brightest in the engineering world - they just might be able to approximate something resembling a space program. Get to Mars in 7 years? Assuming they mean "launch a rocket capable of reaching Mars in 7 years", that might be possible; actually getting there in 7 is a little tighter, considering the trip itself takes anywhere from 8 - 10 months.
The ruler of the UAE's emirate of Dubai, Sheik Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, said the mission will prove the Arab world is still capable of delivering scientific contributions to humanity, despite the many conflicts across the Middle East.
With the US seemingly out of the space business, it's going to fall on other countries or private industry to get Americans back into space. The latter doesn't concern me anywhere near as much as the former. Given how dependent we are on satellite communications, not being able to get crews up launch, repair, and maintain our critical communication infrastructure is rather frightening.
Part of that "fundamental transformation," to be sure...
That is all.