(MENAFN - Khaleej Times) UAE's first Emirati astronaut and his crew will be taking their final exam next week for their mission to the International Space Station, which is now exactly a month away.
Hazza Al Mansoori will be required to do a mock mission on August 30, where he will play out his takeoff and tasks to be carried out on the International Space Station (ISS), such as preparing meals, getting equipment ready and arranging camera equipment for meetings, as well as what his role will be during the landing.
He's heading to the ISS from September 25 to October 3 and will be joined with American astronaut Jessica Meir - who is also going to space for the first time - and Russian commander Oleg Skripockha, who has been at the ISS twice. They will travel onboard the Soyuz MS-15 mission and it will be the 61st expedition.
Meir has been posting photos on social media of their final training. She posted on Twitter last week: "Today's mission: exam on manual control for Soyuz landing. I provide inputs to increase or decrease lift, depending on the flight trajectory and g-loading. This training takes place in the centrifuge, providing a direct result of increased g-force. Only 35 days to launch."
Al Mansoori and his back up candidate, Sultan Al Neyadi, were chosen from over 4,000 candidates by the Mohammed bin Rashid Space Centre (MBRSC).
Khaleej Times had revealed that MBRSC had signed the contract with the Russian space agency (Roscosmos) just an hour after the Soyuz MS-10 incident happened on October 10, where the astronauts were forced to make a ballistic re-entry into the Earth due to improper booster separation. The Soyuz spacecraft hasn't had a serious incident as such since the 1980s.
In another recent incident, the Soyuz MS-14 mission took off on August 22, however, the spacecraft failed to dock to the ISS. It's been circling the Earth, however, has been kept very far from the ISS to prevent a collision.
Roscosmos announced that another docking attempt will be made on the morning of August 26. The crew on board are safe. This is the same flight in which Russia has sent a robot to join the astronauts on the ISS.
Hazza and his crewmates are scheduled for the next mission.