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Ponta Delgada

Future Microbial Observatory in Furnas opens to public in 2010

The Microbial Observatory will open in Furnas in 2010, the International Year of Biodiversity. It is an observatory dedicated to scientific research and dissemination of microbial diversity, an area with an enormous potential for application in areas such as medicine.
This assurance was conveyed last night by the Regional Secretary for Science, Technology and Infrastructures after a scientific expedition to the layers of living organisms which are abundant in Furnas hot springs.
For José  Contente, Furnas represent a “natural laboratory of biodiversity as one may collect various organisms that might have several applications, mainly in the medical field in addition to contributing the knowledge of life on earth as well as of the potentialities that all lives contain. 
The future observatory in Furnas will comprise a research component and another dedicated to scientific dissemination that will provide a major contribution to the creation of a museum, included in the project, where all the information collected and catalogued in the hot springs will be displayed. 
Regarding the activities related to Science and Technology, the Government of the Azores wants to promote all scientific activity and dissemination, which will subsequently benefit the business sector, that is, “we want to promote scientific knowledge in our environment in order to turn it into qualified employment as well as into added value for companies and for the Region. This is our main goal,” stated the Regional Secretary.
Furthermore, the Government of the Azores is decided to build this high-end science centre with the purpose of providing a further contribution in the creation of scientific qualification stages at an international level.
The various microorganisms that live in abundance in the Furnas hot springs may be used for diverse scientific purposes, such as medicine, particularly thermal medicine, cosmetics and relaxation.
“For us, all scientific research should be applied so that we may achieve useful resources for people, this is why we have invested in science and technology,” underlines the Regional Secretary.
In order to ensure the preservation of the microorganism potential in Furnas, we need, according to José Contente, to defend it with appropriate legislation and with all types of support to continue the in-depth scientific research so that the natural heritage of the Azores may be at the service of the Azoreans and of researchers. 
José  Contente also ensured support to all researchers working in the Region as long as they promote the Azores among the international scientific community and provide an important contribution to citizens as recipients of the results of that scientific research.
The future Microbial Observatory in Furnas will be another science centre that will join the five Observatories built in the Azores, integrated in the Science Guide, which promote and ensure the research, dissemination and the creation of a scientific culture in the Azores.
The exhibition titled as “Life at Boiling Point” (Vida em Ebulição), open to the public at the Chalé dos Banhos (Bath Chalet) will be extended for another two months, being now addressed at schools during the week and to visitors during weekends. It is an interactive exhibition that not only provides a scientific accompaniment by the project coordinator, Paula Aguiar, but also the possibility of field trips. 


Official government press-releases presented in all foreign languages interfaces of the Azorean Government Portal (Portal do Governo dos Açores) are a sub-set of the government's official press-releases daily output and are chosen for translation and publication on the foreign language interfaces based on audience segmentation criteria. The entire collection of the Azorean government press-releases is available in portuguese, here, from the GACS Press Office site.

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