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The Rashid Rover Prepares For Its Lunar Exploration Mission

The UAE’s lunar mission will take off tomorrow, helping scientists figure out how to colonize new planets.

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the rashid rover prepares for its lunar exploration mission

Tomorrow (Wednesday, November 30th), at 12:39pm (Gulf Standard Time), the Emirati-made Rashid Rover will lift off on its mission to the Moon, while the entire Arab world looks on with pride at this huge milestone.

Rashid Rover, named after Sheikh Rashid bin Saeed Al Maktoum, will touch down on the southeastern edge of the Moon’s Mare Frigoris (Sea of Cold), from where it will begin capturing data from the vast, unexplored basins of the lunar surface.

Sending home over 10 gigabytes of scientific data and images, Rashid Rover will help scientists to study the lunar geology by supplying information on soil content, plasma levels, dust movement and other details. The advanced vehicle will carry out its mission using 3D cameras, motion sensor systems, and communication tools powered by solar panels.

As well as helping experts back on Earth to better understand our own origins, Rashid Rover will also be at the forefront of developing new technologies that could see humans colonizing the Moon and, eventually, Mars.

“The mission embodies the aspirations of the UAE. Rashid Rover will collect images and information that will allow the UAE to conduct comprehensive and integrated studies on how to build a human settlement on the Moon, prepare for future missions to study Mars and provide the scientific community with answers about the solar system and other planets,” says Mohammed Bin Rashid Space Centre in an official statement.

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To reach its destination, Rashid Rover will hitch a lift on SpaceX’s Falcon 9 rocket before making the final leg of the journey to the Moon’s surface using a lander called Hakuto-R M1. As the lander gets closer to the deck, the Japanese-made craft will first orbit the Moon in an elliptical trajectory before entering into a soft, vertical descent performed by fully-automated guidance systems.

Rashid Rover is the first of the UAE’s missions to the Moon, but it certainly won’t be the last. In September, MBRSC signed an agreement with the Chinese National Space Administration to begin joint projects and future lunar exploration, including sending another rover to the Moon on board Chang’e 7, which is expected to launch in 2026.

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Initial Trials Of Dubai’s Driverless Evocargo Trucks Completed

Testing was announced on July 17, and the completion is a major milestone towards upgrading the region’s logistics infrastructure.

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initial trials of dubai's driverless evocargo trucks completed
Dubai Media Office

A Dubai-based company has completed the initial trials for the UAE’s first driverless trucks. The groundbreaking achievement by Evocargo, partnering with Dubai South, took place at Dubai South Logistics District, and marked a significant step towards incorporating autonomous technologies into the region’s wider logistics infrastructure.

Announced on Wednesday, July 17th, the trials featured the Evocargo N1 unmanned electric truck navigating a predetermined route within a controlled setting. The test involved interactions with common road obstacles such as cars, trucks, and pedestrians, aiming to evaluate the vehicle’s hardware and software reliability, accident prevention systems, and overall readiness for public road use.

Officials were keen to highlight that this accomplishment aligns with the UAE’s ambitious strategy to position itself as a global leader in innovation and technology adoption. The country aims to have 25% of all transportation in Dubai autonomous by 2030, underscoring its commitment to revolutionizing the logistics sector using advanced technologies.

Mohsen Ahmad, CEO of the Logistics District at Dubai South, emphasized the importance of the collaboration with Evocargo in enhancing the region’s logistics capabilities. He noted that autonomous vehicles are set to increase efficiency, reduce carbon emissions, and establish a sustainable logistics infrastructure that will benefit both Dubai and the wider UAE.

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Ahmed Al-Ansi, CEO of Evocargo Autonomous Logistic Services, also expressed optimism that the trials will draw new customers and investments across the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) countries. The partnership aims to lead in innovative tech solutions, further establishing the UAE as a pioneer in autonomous transportation.

The successful completion of the trials marks a crucial step towards realizing the UAE’s vision for a technologically advanced and sustainable future in which autonomous vehicles are expected to play a pivotal role in global logistics.

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