Sino-Brazilian satellite to gather new science data
( 2003-10-20 08:40) (China Daily)
The second earth resources satellite, jointly developed by China and Brazil, is set to be launched into orbit some time in the next three days,, officials said yesterday.
The satellite will be launched at the Taiyuan range in North China's Shanxi Province using a Long March 4-B rocket.
It is the first such launch after China's successful manned space mission of last week.
The rocket will also carry another small communication satellite, named "Innovation I,'' produced by Chinese Academy of Sciences, according to the China National Space Administration.
The earth resources satellite is designed to gather various information, including picture and image data, of China's terrestrial and oceanic territories, and partial areas of its neighbouring countries and regions.
The satellite can reveal changes to various national territory resources, such as forests, oceans, mineral products, and review natural disasters, and can provide necessary support for the two countries to better exploit resources and protect environment.
China and Brazil will jointly own and use the device and can receive data from it as it passes over the countries.
Moreover, other countries can receive data from it on the basis of an agreement with the two countries.
With a designed two-year life span, the satellite will be controlled by China for one and a half years, with the rest time being handled by Brazil.
The first China-Brazil earth resources satellite was launched in 1999 in Taiyuan.
The two sides are also working on the versions of a third and fourth satellite.
A senior Brazilian official was quoted by Xinhua as saying last Friday in Beijing that China's success in the manned space arena broke the duopoly of Russia and the United States in manned space flight, greatly encouraging other developing countries.
By carrying out its own manned space programme, China showed that a developing country can also make achievements in frontier technological fields, said Roberto Amaral, Brazilian minister of science and technology, who is attending the 14th Academician Conference of the Third World Academy of Sciences.
Amaral highly values the space technology co-operation between Brazil and China in recent years.
"We are particularly interested in closer co-operation with China in developing space technology,'' he said. "Chinese scientists have much experience in some areas, which would definitely help us.''
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