The limited-edition passport stamp is, quite literally, out of this world!
9 February 2021| Last updated on 10 February 2021
Yes, the stamp actually uses Martian Ink.
Starting February 9, 2021, visitors arriving at UAE airports will find a special surprise.
Anyone entering the country will receive a stamp on their passport made from Martian Ink, to celebrate the UAE's historic event of the Hope Probe's arrival to Mars on Tuesday night.
The new stamp design uses the world's first-ever 'Martian Ink', made using volcanic basalt rocks that give the Red Planet its famously predominant rusty red colour. But it won't be available for long!
Produced by the UAE Government Media Office in collaboration with Dubai Airports, the limited-edition design features Mars, the Emirati-made Hope Probe, and a special message which reads: "You’ve arrived in the Emirates. The Emirates is arriving at Mars on 09.02.2021."
It's a commemoration of the Arab world's major milestone and new era in the space race.
How is the Martian Ink made?
The Martian Ink is made using basalt rocks, which can be found on both Mars and on certain parts of our planet such as the UAE's Hajar mountains and Mleiha desert.
Experts and gemologists collected basalt rocks, which were then crushed into a fine paste and dried in the sun. The paste were then mixed with adhesives to create three separate colours that represent Mars.
Khaled Al Shehhi, Executive Director of Production and Digital Communication Sector, UAE Government Media Office, said: “On July 20, 2020, the world watched in excitement as Emirates Mars Mission’s Hope Probe blasted off towards Mars."
"Now, seven months later on February 9 2021, the Hope Probe is set to arrive to the Red Planet’s orbit — a major milestone for the UAE and for the Arab world that embodies hope, and conveys the ambition and motivation of the region’s people in overcoming the most pressing challenges to realise their dreams," he added.