Abu Dhabi, UAEFriday 4 December 2020

UAE IN SPACE

Expo 2020 Dubai: Giant SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket replica to welcome visitors into US pavilion

Space and technology is going to be a major focus at the pavilion

A 43 metre-tall SpaceX rocket model will wow visitors to the US pavilion at Expo 2020 next year.

Pieces of Moon rock and a Mars rover will also reinforce the space theme.

A US delegation on Wednesday received a first look at the Falcon 9 booster mock-up and the pavilion’s star-covered facade during a handover ceremony.

John Rakolta Jr, United States ambassador to the UAE, and US Department of State counsellor, Ulrich Brechbuhl, placed the final star on the structure as part of a celebration for meeting the pavilion’s handover deadline, ahead of the expo’s official opening on October 1, 2021.

The pavilion, spanning 3,344 square metres, will present the breadth of American achievements - from its space triumphs to historic artefacts such as the US founding father Thomas Jefferson’s Quran that dates back 200 years.

A replica of the SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket at Dubai Expo's US pavilion. Reem Mohammed / The National 
A replica of the SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket at Dubai Expo's US pavilion. Reem Mohammed / The National 

“Our ... pavilion here is going to be able to showcase our values and to help drive global change, prosperity and quality of life for all. [The] United States’ pavilion’s theme is life, liberty and the pursuit of the future,” said Mr Rakolta.

“We're going to showcase the brilliant architecture, including the SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket and we're going to be combining that with exhibits, artefacts, like pieces of rock from the moon and our Mars rover.”

Human spaceflight launches have returned to the US, thanks to Nasa’s partnerships with private companies such as Elon Musk’s SpaceX.

This week, a Falcon 9 rocket took an international crew of astronauts to space.

Other country pavilions are also going to highlight their achievements in space during the world fair.

The Italian pavilion will show a drill that will dig through the Martian soil. It will be launched on board the ExoMars rover in 2024.

Tech, culture, food and arts are also going to be a focus at the US pavilion.

The UAE contributed $60 million (Dh220m) to help complete the structure.

Mr Brechbuhl said “substantial construction” of the pavilion has now been completed.

“The World Expo is unlike any other event in the world. Millions will come to Dubai to experience in one place all that the world has to offer,” he said.

“It's an opportunity to connect people in the world with one another, create bonds between our nations that will serve as the foundation of friendship truly for generations to come. There is no better example of that than the UAE’s historic efforts to normalise relationships with Israel and sign the Abraham Accords.”

The Expo 2020 Dubai site - in pictures

Updated: November 18, 2020 03:44 PM

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