What are Analog Missions?

Analog missions are vital in preparing humans for future exploration of Mars and other planets. By simulating space-like conditions right here on Earth, analog missions play a significant role in spaceflight research. They enable space scientists to conduct experiments, develop countermeasures for space-hazards, and test new technologies that are designed for space.


What is the UAE Analog Mission?

The UAE Analog Mission is a part of the Scientific International Research in Unique Terrestrial Station (SIRIUS) SIRIUS 20/21, an 8-month long analog mission conducted in the NEK ground-based analogue facility in Moscow. As part of the Mars 2117 Programme, the UAE Analog Mission studies the effects of isolation and confinement on human psychology, physiology and team dynamics to help prepare for long-duration space exploration. 

This mission is a first of its kind opportunity for Emiratis in various scientific fields, to be part of such  mission that lays the foundation for future UAE space endeavors. The UAE Analog Mission will play a key role in developing Emirati capabilities and contribute to the development of the Mars 2117 Programme, which aims to establish human colonies in Mars by 2117.


How does it contribute to the Mars 2117 strategy?

Mars 2117 was built on 4 strategic pillars:

  • Research and development: Contributing in global efforts to improve and enrich space technology and its advancement
  • Education: Motivate the youth to get into space technology and career paths that lead to its development
  • Enablement: Pioneering strategy as the first of its kind in the MENA region, to invest highly into space technology and its endeavors
  • Collaboration: Cooperation network from all around the world with the same virtue and efforts

The UAE Analog Mission contributes greatly to all the above pillars as engineers and scientists work with government agencies, academia, and space industry companies to gather requirements for testing in harsh space-like environment before they are implemented in space manned missions.


When and where is will the first UAE Analog Mission take place?

The first mission will take place at the NEK Facility in Moscow, Russia, from November 2020 – July 2021. The NEK facility was built in the 1960s for the purpose of understanding the effects of isolation on the human body, psychologically and physically. One of the most well-known missions conducted at NEK was the Mars 500 program, which had several cycles that started at 14 days, 100 days and lastly completed 520 days.


What will the first UAE Analog Mission entail?

The first UAE analog mission will give us an insight into what measures need to be taken into consideration for long duration missions, such as going to Mars. The crewmembers will undergo both physical and psychological tests that allow us to deduce what measures should be taken into account for future space manned missions.  The participants will be confined within the laboratories for the duration of these experiments and carry out various experiments and simulated tasks, upon a daily given schedule. We are looking forward to the outcome of these results as it will enable us to better understand the effects of isolation and confinement on the human body and mind.


What has been done so far for the UAE Analog Mission?

The MBRSC first participated with a call for research that was to be conducted during the SIRIUS Analog Mission. The call was announced in October and final selections will be announced at the end of February 2020.

On the 15th of February, the MBRSC announced a call for Emirati Nationals to apply for the chance to be part of CrewONE that will participate in SIRIUS 20/21. The search is currently in progress for Emirati candidates between the ages of 28 and 55, who are passionate about space and can communicate in English. Preferred occupations include physicians, medical investigators, physiologists, biologists, life-support specialists, and IT and electronics professionals. Shortlisted candidates will be reviewed and interviewed, and the finalists will undergo various tests, after which, the final members of CrewONE (lead and backup) will be announced.


How is the UAE Analog Mission funded?

The UAE Analog Mission is a Mars 2117 initiative and is funded by the ICT fund of the Telecommunications Regulatory Authority.



The voluntary participation of any person in the experiment as a tester should be based on a general understanding of the nature of rights and freedoms set forth in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, however, they cannot be fully implemented.

General requirements

Invitation to participation in the experiment will be addressed to essentially healthy volunteers who meet the following criteria:
Age: 28 to 55 years.
The body mass index between 18.5 and 30.
Growth, preferably not more than 180 cm
Education: Higher

Preferred qualifications:

● physician skilled in emergency care;
● medical investigator experienced in clinical laboratory diagnostics;
● physiologist or biologist;
● mechanical engineer, specialists in life support systems,
● IT and electronics.
● Knowledge of foreign languages: ability to communicate in English about work and general topics.
● Volunteers should send a filled questionnaire and CV (Please find the registration requirements below)




What are analog missions?

Analog missions are field tests that are done in a facility that shares alike physical similarities with a specific space exploration mission. Analog missions are a chance to test several scenarios that could take place in space, and generate a solution manual to future space missions.

What is the Sirius Analog Mission/ UAE Analog Mission#1?

The Sirius analog mission is a mission that tests the effects of isolation and confinement on the human health and the success of space missions.

What is CrewONE?

CrewONE is the first Emirati analog mission that will select the first Emirati analog crewmember.

What is the significance of testing the impact of isolation and confinement on the human mind and body?

For future explorations, whether be it to Mars or any other mission, crewmembers will be in spending long durations in a specific area or even a spacecraft. Knowing what happens to the body, both physiologically and psychologically, allow us to better prepare for our future missions.

Will the mission comprise of participants from other countries?

Yes, the mission is in collaboration with various international agencies, some are Institute of Biomedical Problems (IBMP) and National Aeronautics and Space Administration NASA.

How will the UAE Analog Mission help in future space exploration?

The UAE Analog Mission will be a stepping stone to our future space missions.

What is the relevance of analog missions with respect to Mars 2117?

The duration from Earth to Mars will approximately take 9 months. With that being said, space agencies and academia investigate the effects of this duration on both human health and the prospective colony that will be built on Mars or any manned space missions.

What are the health requirements to qualify for the analog mission?

The applicant needs to have a BMI of 18.5-30. One should also complete all medical tests that defines him/her fit to be nominated for this mission.

What are the dangers involved during analog Missions?

Previous analog missions have shown that certain crew members develop behavioural and cognitive conditions such as sleep disorder, fatigue, sleep disorders and even depression. All these conditions allow space agencies and academia to better comprehend the importance of psychology and physiology of a human in the success of any space mission.

What tasks will the candidates undertake during the mission?

The candidates will have a certain schedule every day that will vary from exercise, research analysis, blood sample collection and other activities that will be decided based on the mission objectives.

Will the candidates be isolated/confined during the entire 8-month mission?

Yes, the candidates will be isolated for 8-months with no interaction will the outside world. They will be able to contact the mission command control and their families through various communication methods.

How many candidates will be selected for the Analog mission?

1 prospective crewmember and 1 backup crewmember

What are the future prospects for candidates who complete the analog mission?

The crewmember that will complete the mission will be a part of the ongoing studies and tests that support in comprehending the logistics of going on long duration space missions.

Can someone with a non-science/technical background apply for the UAE Analog Mission?

Absolutely, the more eclectic the crew is, the better the team dynamic will be.

Where and when will the analog mission take place?

The mission will take place in the Institute of Biomedical Problems (IBMP) in Moscow, and the launch of this mission will be in Nov 2020.

What is the selection process for the analog mission?

Applicants needs to initially fill the forms online, ensuring they meet the minimum requirements, and at a later stage a medical examination will be done to ensure they are fit to be nominated.

Are there going to be more such missions?

Most definitely, we are always exploring missions that trigger our space curiosity.

Candidate-specific questions

Do one need to be a UAE National to apply for the analog mission? 


When is the deadline for registrations? 

Mar 4th 

Can women apply for the analog mission? 


How can I apply? 

You can apply by filling the registration form online

Who will cover the cost of travelling/accommodation costs for selection & training? 

MBRSC will cover all costs of this mission.

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