The UAE Space Agency, working in partnership with Khalifa University of Science and Technology and the American University of Ras al-Khaimah (AURAK) has reviewed the preliminary design of the MeznSat 3U CubeSat satellite.
The project, which is being developed to monitor and study the Earth’s atmosphere, was launched in February to collect and analyse data about carbon dioxide and methane levels in the atmosphere above the UAE.
The preliminary design review was held during a meeting at Masdar Institute, and chaired by Khaled Al Hashmi, director of Space Mission Management at the UAE Space Agency, state news agency WAM reported.
MeznSat is to be launched in late 2019 from a site in Japan, in coordination with the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency.
Once in orbit, the satellite will use a camera as well as a shortwave infrared spectrometer to measure the abundance and distribution of methane and carbon dioxide in the atmosphere.
A team of students will monitor, process, and analyze the data sent from the satellite at a ground station in the UAE.
The satellite will also provide valuable insight into the concentration of nutrients in the coastal waters of the Arabian Gulf, which will allow for more accurate predictions of algal blooms and support the timely implementation of relevant precautionary measures.
Al Hashmi said: "The MeznSat project is an important addition to the UAE’s satellite capabilities, which include remote sensing, Earth observation and communications. The project’s objective is primarily educational, falling within the Agency's mission to develop national capabilities, strengthen scientific research and organize the sector."
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