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Khadija Hasan Ahmad: Nurturing UAE’s Astronomy Culture

Khadija Hasan Ahmad's interest in astronomy began when she was a child, accompanying her father and brothers on desert stargazing excursions in the early 2000s.

Khadija Hasan Ahmad’s passion for astronomy took root in her childhood, joining her father and brothers on desert stargazing excursions in the early 2000s, igniting a lifelong love for the cosmos.

From Family Hobby to Organizational Role:

At 25, Khadija actively managed the Dubai Astronomy Group (DAG), initially founded by her father, Hasan Ahmad Al Hariri. DAG swiftly expanded as a small group, drawing Khadija and her siblings into key operational roles.

Leading a growing team of youthful volunteers, Khadija emphasizes a familial ethos within DAG, fostering camaraderie and dedication among members. From organizing events to ensuring volunteers’ well-being, her dedication echoes a shared passion for astronomy.

Pursuing Passion Beyond Academia:

Opting out of traditional higher education after high school, Khadija dedicated herself to DAG, finding fulfillment in connecting with people, conducting public lectures, and orchestrating astronomical events.

Khadija’s routine involves educating children at the Al Thuraya Astronomy Centre, sharing the marvels of space. Her work extends to organizing public stargazing events to kindle fascination for the cosmos among the broader community.

Stargazing Hotspots in the UAE:

Khadija recommends Jebel Jais for its year-round favorable weather and breathtaking sunrise vistas. Al Quaa in Abu Dhabi offers unparalleled views of the night sky, while accessible Al Qudra serves as an alternative accessible spot for stargazing enthusiasts.

Khadija’s involvement extends internationally as she represents DAG, engaging with prominent bodies like NOAA and NASA. Her recent lectures to a massive audience in New Mexico during a solar eclipse event underscores DAG’s global outreach.

Contributing to Solar Eclipse Awareness:

Khadija’s aim includes:

  • Donating solar eclipse glasses during the upcoming solar eclipse event in the US.
  • Envisioning widespread distribution across statesand .
  • Ensuring broader access to this celestial phenomenon.

Nasa’s invitation to DAG for the next solar eclipse event stands as a testament to Khadija’s dedication and DAG’s global impact.

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