The United Arab Emirates' first mission to Mars Al Amal ("Hope") has sent the first image of the Red Planet to Earth, the national space agency said on Sunday.

The Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi, Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, shared the image of Mars on Twitter and described the first photo of the planet as a defining moment in UAE history.

“The transmission of the Hope Probe's first image of Mars is a defining moment in our history and marks the UAE joining advanced nations involved in space exploration,” the prince wrote.

Al Nahyan also expressed the hope that the work of "Hope" will lead to new discoveries about Mars, which will benefit all of humanity.

In the picture taken from a distance of about 15,500 miles (25,000 kilometers), you can see the North Pole of the Red Planet (in the upper left corner), as well as the largest volcano in the solar system – Olympus Mons. Mars looks like a yellowed semicircle against the black background of space.

Al Amal is the first Martian mission not only in the history of the UAE, but generally the first for an Arab country. The Prime Minister of the UAE and the ruler of the Emirate of Dubai, Mohammed bin Rashid Al-Maktoum, also shared the colored image on Twitter.

The spacecraft weighing about 1,350 kg was created in cooperation with the United Arab Emirates Space Agency, the Mohammed bin Rashid Space Center, and three American universities. The probe, designed to study the climate and the lower atmosphere of Mars, was launched on top of a Japanese H-IIA rocket from Japan's Tanegashima Space Center on July 20, 2020. On February 9, 2021, the probe entered the planet's orbit.

UAE’s “Hope” Probe Successfully Reaches Mars Orbit
The probe should now begin a two-year scientific program to collect data on the climate of Mars and the interaction between the upper and lower layers of the planet’s gas envelope.

Hope is the first of three missions to arrive at Mars this month after China and the USA also launched spacecraft to the Red Planet in July, taking advantage of an alignment between Mars and the Earth.