NASA and Brazil sign Earth science agreements

WASHINGTON, D.C. (BNO NEWS) -- NASA on Thursday announced that it has signed two cooperative Earth science agreements with Agencia Espacial Brasileira (AEB), NASA's counterpart space agency in Brazil.

The agreements were signed during NASA Administrator Charles Bolden's visit to South America. One agreement formalizes NASA-AEB scientific collaboration on the Global Precipitation Measurement (GPM) mission while the other extends an agreement for the Ozone Cooperation Mission.

GPM, which is an Earth science mission led by NASA and the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA), will provide advanced information on rain and snow characteristics, as well as detailed 3-D views of precipitation structure.

NASA and AEB will study data distribution and the use of GPM's products in Brazil, coordinate cooperative research projects and support the exchange of scientific and engineering personnel.

With the use of balloon-borne instruments launched from Maxaranguape, Brazil, the Ozone Cooperation Mission is aimed at studying concentrations of various atmospheric constituents.

Results from the mission will contribute to the understanding of the Earth's ozone layer, its generation and depletion. They also will help calibrate and verify satellite remote sensors. NASA and AEB will share equipment, data, training and technical expertise.

"The technically skilled and dedicated researchers in Brazil are excellent partners for NASA, and we look forward to many more years of successful international cooperation in space-based Earth science," Bolden stated, noting that Earth observation from space is vital to understanding the planet.

Bolden met with senior government officials in several South American countries, including Chile, Argentina and Brazil, as well as Costa Rica in Central America, during his week-long trip to discuss potential cooperation between NASA and regional space agencies.

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