Friday, November 13, 2015

This flag flew on the moon

Dubai - Two milestone events of 1971 the successful flight of Apollo 14 in February, and the establishment of the United Arab Emirates in December of that year connected for the first time today at the biennial Dubai Airshow 2015.
Led by Kallman Worldwide, organizer of the show’s U.S. International Pavilion, a contingent of American aerospace companies gathered in the Pavilion Meeting Point Executive Lounge to present an American flag flown on that lunar mission as a gift to the new UAE Space Agency. The agency was launched in 2014 with plans for a future mission to Mars, and last month became the first Arab nation to join the International Space Exploration Coordination Group.
Dr. Khalifa Mohamed Al Romaithi, Chairman of the UAE Space Agency, and Dr. Mohammed Al Ahbabi, UAE Space Agency Director General, attended to accept the historic 6 x 4-inch flag, which was carried aboard the Apollo 14 Command Module "Kitty Hawk" and later signed by the mission’s Lunar Module Pilot, Edgar Mitchell.
The flag was presented in a custom-designed shadow box, displayed with an Apollo 14 mission patch and a photo of Mitchell on the surface of the Moon, taken by mission Commander Alan B. Shepherd. The display was inscribed: "In the spirit of innovation, exploration and discovery that unites all mankind, we present this flag of the United States, flown to the Moon on Apollo 14, January 31 - February 9, 1971, to the U.A.E. Space Agency, with sincere best wishes for success."
The gift was signed below the inscription and presented with Kallman by industry leaders Boeing, Enterprise Florida, General Atomics Aeronautical Systems, Lockheed Martin, Orbital ATK, Pratt & Whitney and Raytheon. A select group of U.S. International Pavilion exhibitors at the Dubai Airshow also supported the presentation. All presenters were either original Apollo program contractors, direct industry descendants of those contractors or are presently involved in and supporting space exploration around the world.
"From pilot-to-pilot, generation-to-generation, aviators, and especially space explorers, share a mission to further the reaches of science. Apollo had extraordinary influence on the aerospace industry, and the presenters of this flag carry the program’s ‘DNA’ as they continue to forge our future," said Kallman Worldwide President and CEO, Tom Kallman. "Nation-to-nation, people-to-people, we’re proud to present this gift as a symbol of goodwill and partnership to the U.A.E. Space Agency and the new generation of pioneers and professionals who will engineer its vision to reality."
Dr. Khalifa Mohamed Al Romaithi, Chairman of the U.A.E. Space Agency said: "We are delighted and honored by this gesture of goodwill, and we thank the American aerospace companies and Kallman Worldwide for such a symbolic and meaningful gift. The late Sheikh Zayed met with some of the Apollo teams in the ‘70s, and always had a vision for the UAE to enter into the space industry. We are proud today to be present here with a fully-fledged Space Agency welcoming the world’s leading aerospace organizations to the UAE for the Dubai Airshow."
Dr. Al Ahbabi added: "It has been great to meet with the American aerospace companies here at the Dubai Airshow. We thank them for the gift, and enjoy the opportunity to further build our relationships with fellow industry players. We share strong connections between the two countries, and we believe that through working together and cooperating we will exchange best practices and learn from each other as we all grow and develop within the sector."
Since its founding in 1986 as "Arab Air" the Dubai Airshow has become recognized as one of the world’s premier aerospace and defense industry events, and is the most comprehensive of its type in the region. The 2015 edition is expecting over 1,100 exhibitors and 65,000 trade visitors to DWC, Dubai Airshow site.
Michele van Akelijen, Managing Director of Dubai Airshow organizer F&E Aerospace, said, "The Dubai Airshow has always been the place for the aerospace industry to meet, and it is wonderful to see this support for the U.A.E. Space Agency from U.S. International Pavilion organizers Kallman Worldwide." She continued, "It’s an exciting time for the aerospace industry, particularly for space, with projects like the Mission to Mars gaining worldwide attention."

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