Entertainer Steve Harvey and Ambassador Yousef Al Otaiba of the United Arab Emirates met up for an unusual diplomatic event Aug. 23 at George Washington University. Together, they received a video call from Emirati astronaut Sultan Al Neyadi and his American counterpart, Warren “Woody” Hoburg, both of whom completed a six-month mission Sept. 4 on the International Space Station (ISS).
The event was co-hosted by NASA, the
In the video chat, the astronauts talked about their daily lives at the ISS, how they exercised, maintained the space station and worked on more than 100 scientific experiments during the course of their mission.
“By working together we are accelerating technical progress and scientific discovery that only can be done with the type of collaboration that you see here today,” Al Marri said. “Despite its relatively brief history in the field of space exploration, the UAE’s space program has made impressive strides in part due to its bilateral relationships with the United States, South Korea and Russia. The program now boasts a complete analysis of the Martian atmosphere. Far from stopping now, the program has set its sights on the asteroid belt just past Mars, promising even more exciting discoveries.”
With this newfound success, the UAE has pledged to help other countries develop their space programs. As Feldstein said: “If you want to go quickly, go alone. And if you want to go farther, go together.”
As part of that shared interest, future UAE astronauts are already training with their counterparts at NASA’s Johnson Space Center in Houston, Texas.