Following the recent success of the Emirates Mars Mission, His Highness Shaikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai has just announced the name of the first Arab female astronaut, Noura Al-Matroushi.
Al-Matrooshi was selected from over 4,000 candidates to be trained with the NASA Astronaut Group 23 of astronauts for future space exploration missions. A mechanical engineer by training, she graduated with a bachelor’s degree from the United Arab Emirates University and also studied at the Vaasa University of Applied Sciences (VAMK) in Finland and Hanyang University in Seoul.
Since 2016, Al-Matrooshi works as a piping engineer at the UAE’s National Petroleum Construction Company. In addition to her previous work experience and education, she also stood out from the rest of the candidates thanks to her IQ and personality.
Al-Matrooshi will be training together with her male counterpart, Mohammed Al-Mulla. Born in 1988, Al-Mulla is a pilot at the Air Wing Center, and he has more than 1,500 flight hours under his belt. He has been able to spend so much time in the air because he became the youngest pilot in Dubai Police at 19 years of age.
The two astronauts in training will be preparing for a long stay in space and everything that goes along with it, including spacewalks, spaceflight control, and missions in low orbit involving robotics.
Currently, the United Arab Emirates has four astronauts (counting Noura Al-Matroushi and Mohammed Al-Mulla) serving under the Mohammed Bin Rashid Space Centre (MBRSC), a Dubai government organization working on the UAE space program.
There’s a lot of responsibility on their shoulders because the gulf country would like to become a leading space exploration nation. If Noura Al-Matroushi and Mohammed Al-Mulla successfully complete their training, they can not only make this ambitious goal come true but also inspire a new generation of astronauts.
Emirates Airline To Invest $2 Billion On Major Upgrades
Emirates plans a huge retrofit on its fleet and an upgrade to the inflight experience.
Emirates Airline has just announced plans to improve its inflight experience for passengers. The carrier has budgeted $2 billion to refit the interiors of over 120 of its aircraft, aiming for a more modern aesthetic for cabins, along with better food choices, modern inflight entertainment options, and a significant service overhaul.
Emirates is well known for its premium service, so this overhaul is an ambitious decision, as many other airlines are trying their hardest to increase revenues and reduce costs.
“Emirates is flying against the grain and investing to deliver ever better experiences to our customers. Through the pandemic we’ve continued to launch new services and initiatives to ensure our customers travel with the assurance and ease, including digital initiatives to improve customer experiences on the ground. Now we’re rolling out a series of intensive programmes to take Emirates’ signature inflight experiences to the next level,” says Sir Tim Clark, President of Emirates Airline.
The investment aims to ensure Emirates stays on top form, with many of the upgrades scheduled to materialize quickly. For the physical refit, aircraft are scheduled to enter the Emirates Engineering Center in November. So what can passengers expect once work is complete? The most significant change will be to aircraft interiors, where flyers of all classes will immediately spot new flooring, paneling, and reupholstered seats.
As well as a physical overhaul, the airline plans to upgrade entertainment systems, adding a “Cinema in the Sky” experience, complete with a bespoke app. In addition, better meal choices will reflect changing dietary preferences, including a new vegan menu and a nod to sustainability — though there will remain a strong luxury vibe to the proceedings, as the company has entered an exclusive agreement to offer Dom Perignon vintage champagne on board, as well as delicacies such as Persian caviar.
Though many of the improvements may seem trivial, Emirates is hoping that along with a huge cabin overhaul, their overall flight experience will continue to make travel a pleasurable experience, elevating their service above the competition.