UAE reveals first image taken by Emirati-built KhalifaSat of Dubai icon

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The photo of Palm Jumeirah, the famous man-made island that lies off the coast of Dubai in the Arabian Gulf, was revealed by Dubai’s Mohammed bin Rashid Space Center. (Dubai Media Office)
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The UAE-built satellite was launched from Japan’s Tanegashima Space Center in October.(Dubai Media Office)
Updated 06 November 2018
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UAE reveals first image taken by Emirati-built KhalifaSat of Dubai icon

  • The photo of Palm Jumeirah, the famous man-made island that lies off the coast of Dubai in the Arabian Gulf, was revealed by Dubai’s Mohammed bin Rashid Space Center
  • The space center said the image was taken on Oct. 31 as KhalifaSat passed over the emirate

DUBAI: This image taken from space of Dubai’s Palm Jumierah is the first official photo taken by UAE satellite KhalifaSat.

The photo of Palm Jumeirah, the famous man-made island that lies off the coast of Dubai in the Arabian Gulf, was revealed by Dubai’s Mohammed bin Rashid Space Center this week.

The space center said the image was taken on Oct. 31 as KhalifaSat passed over the emirate.

And Dubai Media Office celebrated the exciting moment with a tweet of the image.

The satellite is being used to deliver high-quality images of Earth, assisting international government and private organizations with environmental monitoring, disaster relief and urban planning.

The UAE-built satellite was launched from Japan’s Tanegashima Space Center in October.

The UAE has previously sent two satellites into orbit - DubaiSat-1 and DubaiSat-2 - but KhalifaSat is the first to be entirely built in the Gulf state.

With construction beginning in 2013, the satellite took five years to be completed following an announcement by UAE’s Vice President and Dubai Ruler Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum.

KhalifaSat is set to spend five years in a ‘low earth orbit’ before descending to Dubai’s Mohammed Bin Rashid Space Center.


Chinese scientist who gene-edited babies fired by university

Updated 21 January 2019
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Chinese scientist who gene-edited babies fired by university

  • Hundreds of Chinese and international scientists condemned He Jiankui
  • Chinese authorities also denounced He and issued a temporary halt to research activities involving the editing of human genes

SHENZHEN, China: A Chinese scientist responsible for what he said were the world’s first “gene-edited” babies evaded oversight and broke guidelines in a quest for fame and fortune, state media said on Monday, as the university where he worked announced his dismissal.
He Jiankui said in November that he used a gene-editing technology known as CRISPR-Cas9 to alter the embryonic genes of twin girls born that month, sparking an international outcry about the ethics and safety of such research.
Hundreds of Chinese and international scientists condemned He and said any application of gene editing on human embryos for reproductive purposes was unethical.
Chinese authorities also denounced He and issued a temporary halt to research activities involving the editing of human genes.
He had “deliberately evaded oversight” with the intent of creating a gene-edited baby “for the purpose of reproduction,” according to the initial findings of an investigating team set up by the Health Commission of China in southern Guangdong province, Xinhua news agency reported.
He had raised funds himself and privately organized a team of people to carry out the procedure in order to “seek personal fame and profit,” Xinhua said, adding that he had forged ethical review papers in order to enlist volunteers for the procedure.
The safety and efficacy of the technologies He used are unreliable and creating gene-edited babies for reproduction is banned by national decree, the report said.
The Southern University of Science and Technology (SUSTech) in the city of Shenzhen, said in a statement on its website that He had been fired.
“Effective immediately, SUSTech will rescind the work contract with Dr. Jiankui He and terminate any of his teaching and research activities at SUSTech,” the statement said.
The university added the decision came after a preliminary investigation by the Guangdong Province Investigation Task Force.
Neither He nor a representative could be reached for comment on Monday.
He defended his actions at a conference in Hong Kong in November, saying that he was “proud” of what he had done and that gene editing would help protect the girls from being infected with HIV, the virus that causes AIDS.
He’s announcement sparked a debate among Chinese legal scholars over which laws He had technically broken by carrying out the procedure, as well as whether he could be held criminally responsible or not.
Many scholars pointed to a 2003 guideline that bans altered human embryos from being implanted for the purpose of reproduction, and says altered embryos cannot be developed for more than 14 days.
The case files of those involved who are suspected of committing crimes had been sent to the ministry of public security, an unnamed spokesperson for the investigation team was quoted by Xinhua as saying.