The United Arab Emirates (UAE) has unveiled a new project that aims to establish the first inhabitable human settlement on Mars by 2117.
The initiative called “Mars 2117 Project” was announced on Tuesday by Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, the ruler of Dubai and Vice President of the UAE, on the sidelines of the 5th World Government Summit, currently being held in the Emirate.
“The landing of people on other planets has been a longtime dream for humans. Our aim is that the UAE will spearhead international efforts to make this dream a reality,” said Sheikh Mohammad Bin Rashid.
Sheikh Mohammed said his country was one of the world’s leaders in space science investments, adding that it aims to accelerate the research in this area.
“The new project is a seed that we plant today, and we expect future generations to reap the benefits, driven by its passion to learn to unveil a new knowledge,” Sheikh Mohammed said.
According to a statement released by the Dubai government media office, the project is set to be developed and executed in partnership with major international scientific research institutions.
The project will initially focus on preparing the human cadres able to achieve scientific breakthrough to facilitate the arrival of humans to the Red Planet over the next decades, the statement said.
It will start with an Emirati scientific team and will be extended to include international scientists and researchers, it added.
The project will focus on developing faster means of transportation from and to the Red Planet. It will also come up with an integrated scientific visualisation of how the settlement will look like, and how life will be there in term of food, transportation and energy among many others.
In July 2014, the UAE announced it would create a space agency with the aim of sending the first Arab unmanned probe to Mars by 2021.