Emirati astronauts Hazzaa Al Mansoori and Sultan Al Neyadi are undergoing comprehensive training with prime and backup flight crews in Russia ahead of the Soyuz MS-15 mission to the International Space Station (ISS).
With less than 100 days to go, Al Mansoori is training with the mission's main crew, alongside Roscosmos commander Oleg Skripochka, and the American NASA astronaut, Jessica Meir.
Al Neyadi, the UAE's backup astronaut, is undergoing similar training with the backup team, which is also composed of three astronauts, and includes Sergei Nikolaevich, the Russian flight commander of Roscosmos, and Thomas Henry, the American astronaut of NASA.
Al Mansoori and Al Neyadi are training at the Yuri Gagarin Cosmonaut Training Centre in Star City, Russia, for the first time with the crews of the mission.
The training on the Soyuz MS will specifically be on the take-off and landing and how to deal with emergency situations. The astronauts will also undergo a range of medical tests, prior to the mission, to measure their physical and mental fitness levels.
The astronauts will also train on surviving in a water environment next month. Al Mansoori and Al Neyadi are to travel to the European Astronaut Centre, which is overseen by the European Space Agency in Cologne, Germany, and then to the Lyndon B Johnson Space Centre in Houston, Texas, for more training.
Yousuf Hamad Al Shaibani, director general of the Mohammed Bin Rashid Space Centre (MBRSC) said: “Less than 100 days are left to travel to ISS. Youth in the UAE and the entire Arab region are looking forward to this historical event."
Al Mansoori will fly for an eight-day space mission to ISS aboard a Soyuz-MS 15 spacecraft on September 25 and return to Earth aboard a Soyuz-MS 12.
The UAE Astronaut Programme is funded by the ICT fund of the Telecommunications Regulatory Authority (TRA).
Source: Arabian Business