MBRSC and Dubai Municipality announce Dubai Space Laboratory

Dubai Municipality and MBRSC will provide the Dubai Space Laboratory with the latest technologies and devices in accordance with international best practices and standards.
Photo credit: WAM

Dubai Municipality and the Mohammed Bin Rashid Space Centre (MBRSC) have inked a memorandum of understanding (MoU) at COP28, officially establishing the Dubai Space Laboratory. This lab, the first of its kind in the region, is dedicated to testing, researching, and calibrating devices, materials, and technologies essential for space missions, according to a report by WAM.

The MoU, signed by Dawoud Al Hajri, Director-General of Dubai Municipality, and Salem AlMarri, Director-General of MBRSC, solidifies the commitment to advancing Dubai’s presence in the space sector. This initiative comes as the municipality’s second venture into space endeavours, following the successful launch of DMSat-1, a nanometric satellite designed for environmental data analysis and air pollutant measurements.

Beyond calibration activities, the Dubai Space Laboratory will engage in comprehensive studies and research aligned with Dubai’s strategic objectives in space exploration. To ensure cutting-edge capabilities, Dubai Municipality and MBRSC will equip the laboratory with the latest technologies and devices adhering to international best practices and standards.

A pivotal aspect of the project involves the creation of a sophisticated database to store and manage test results. This database, built on an integrated information infrastructure, will utilise advanced computer programmes for efficient data utilisation and application. The laboratory aims to serve as a platform for developing advanced solutions, reinforcing Dubai’s standing in the global space sector.

Al Hajri said: “The main goal of this project is to support the UAE’s space sector, which has become one of the country’s most important and promising economic sectors. Its growth is down to the attention given to it by the government’s leadership, who consider space a national priority.”

He continued: “Dubai Municipality’s partnerships reflect the emirate’s forward-looking aspirations. Future sectors such as space are key to Dubai’s strategy for strengthening its position as a global hub for innovation and a future economy.”

He added: “The Dubai Space Laboratory will include a centre for space research, where specialised research studies will be conducted using the comprehensive space database to support the objectives of the UAE National Space Programme. The laboratory represents a shift in the scope of the municipality’s work, which will now encompass developing innovative solutions to challenges based on scientific research.”

AlMarri stated: “We are proud to collaborate with the Dubai Municipality on the development of the Dubai Space Laboratory project. This project represents a significant advancement in specialised laboratory services and calibration work at the regional level and aligns with the vision of MBRSC to enhance the UAE’s global position in the space sector and future economy.

“The MoU aims to support the country’s space sector and promote excellence in advanced laboratory testing. The Dubai Space Laboratory will serve as a comprehensive research centre for space and advanced technologies, where we will provide state-of-the-art technologies, devices, and advanced information infrastructure.”

He further added: “This cooperation will enhance the achievement of strategic progress in space research and the development of innovative solutions. These solutions will be based on solid scientific foundations and contribute to addressing future challenges while opening new horizons in space.”

Under the MoU, Dubai Municipality and MBRSC are set to pioneer the development of an unprecedented digital model and simulation. This cutting-edge initiative, driven by the research conducted at the Dubai Space Laboratory, aims to delve into the future, predicting patterns and characteristics of food and consumables essential for extended space exploration missions.

The space laboratory testing database, integral to this project, will play a crucial role in exploring and forecasting requirements for long-duration space missions, shaping the trajectory of space exploration.

In a commitment to nurturing national talent, the Dubai Space Laboratory will also serve as an educational hub, offering testing, calibration, and research courses. Collaborating with some of the world’s foremost research and training institutes, Dubai Municipality and MBRSC aim to upskill and empower local talent in the burgeoning field of space science.

The Dubai Space Laboratory will find its home at the Dubai Central Laboratory, an institution cultivated by Dubai Municipality to become a global leader in its category. Housing more than 5,000 devices and cutting-edge technological equipment, the laboratory operates in accordance with international best practices.

The Dubai Central Laboratory has gained numerous important international certificates and accreditations. It comprises several laboratories specialising in various fields and supports Dubai Municipality’s vision to become one of the world’s leading municipalities.