On the 20th anniversary of the start of NASA’s descent to the moon, Brazil is re-launching a series of ambitious plans to connect remote areas and monitor the environmental impact of the Amazon.
Friday saw the official launch of Brazil’s Mars-1 mission, in which astronauts would study the planet’s microbes in small lunar mini-probes.
Ogilvy Brazil’s latest effort is to create a satellite constellation which would save people millions by making it possible to remote places.
“These satellite services, which support the security of our borders and bridge remote locations, also provide access to internet services and generate opportunities for local communities to connect and migrate,” said president of the Agency for Technical and Scientific Research Nislio Tiscot Jr, which is behind the project.
The link-up could potentially save Brazil enormous sums, especially in the Amazon region. Currently only 24.4% of Brazilian territories are connected to the internet by communications cables.
In January 2016, Brazil announced plans to be the first country to put an astronaut on the moon.
Space Mission Brazil: Nasa’s lunar mission is reaching the moon Read more
This week, Brazil also launched two satellites that are used to monitor the loss of indigenous forests, the billowing of tropical deltas and changes in climate.
The satellite fleet would monitor the effect of deforestation, storms and erosion in the Amazon and other regions.
Unlike Brazil’s current satellite network for the Brazilian space agency, which keeps data about deforestation for 32 years, the new one, which would be launched in 2024, would be continuously checking deforestation. It would keep continuously on tracking deforestation, said Tony Fernandes, the executive director of the space program at the Brazilian Institute for Space Applications.
“All these information will be gathered, analysed and shared among different agencies, scientific institutions and government,” he said.
There would be two categories of satellites: two small satellites called MSN-36 and 20 more larger satellites that would look for changes on Earth in satellites about 1.6 times the size of the International Space Station orbiting the Earth.
The satellites would gather information on possible extinction events in trees and the decline of the Amazon rainforest, including massive forest fires, floods and landslides.
“In the future, satellites will be used to monitor the Amazon,” said Filipe Raffivo, the coordinator of the National Institute for Space, Atmosphere and Space Technology (Inbom), which is the agency in charge of the satellites.
Already this month, the ministry of the environment said MSN-36 detected forest degradation in four tropical regions, including the region around the Atlantic city of Recife and the Amazon basin.