The eyes of the world were on the UAE yesterday, Tuesday, 9 February, as the UAE Hope Probe Mars Mission entered the Mars Orbit.
And as an emblem of the country’s ambition and guiding principle that the “Impossible is Possible”, a Martian Ink stamp – was produced by the UAE Government Media Office in collaboration with Dubai Airports – to offer a memorable reminder of a new era for Arabs with a special message:
“You’ve arrived in the Emirates. The Emirates is arriving at Mars on 09.02.2021.”
The special passport stamp marks the spacecraft’s arrival to Mars, after it successfully overcame the most critical phase of its mission to enter the Red Planet’s orbit.
The stamp is actually made from Martian ink no less, or in other words, ink extracted from volcanic basalt rocks that give Mars its distinct rusty colour.
The rocks were collected during a special mission to the UAE’s eastern Al Hajar Mountains and Sharjah’s Mleiha Desert by experts and gemologists.
These were then crushed into a fine paste, dried in the sun, and mixed with adhesives to create three separate colors that represent the Red Planet – ready for stamping into the passports of thousands of visitors.
Basalt rocks, which can only be found in certain parts of the world, date back tens of millions of years and give the UAE’s mountain ranges their distinct rugged look.
The mission is expected to collect more than 1,000 GB of new data, which will be shared with over 200 academic and scientific institutions around the world.
The Hope Probe’s historic journey to the Red Planet coincides with a year of celebrations to mark the UAE’s Golden Jubilee.
Image Source UAE National Agency – WAM