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Vila do Porto ,  September 27, 2016

Expansion of Santa Maria space station to double direct jobs, says Brito e Abreu

The Regional Secretary for the Sea, Science and Technology stated in Vila do Porto that the European Space Agency station (ESA) on Santa Maria "will be upgraded to the 'premier league' of space stations worldwide" and double direct jobs on this island.
Fausto Brito e Abreu spoke during the signing ceremony of the agreements for the expansion of ESA space infrastructures on Santa Maria: the maintenance of the current satellite tracking station for another period of 12 months, the transfer of an ESA antenna from Australia to the Azores, the Regional Government's commitment to build the base of this antenna, and the declaration of commitment between the company Edisoft and the Regional Directorate for Science and Technology for the promotion of space activities in the Azores. 
On the sidelines of the event, Brito e Abreu stressed that the agreements for the expansion of space infrastructure on Santa Maria "is extremely important" insofar as it will allow "the increase of its technological capacity," but also of "new business opportunities."
"With the installation of the new antenna, the Azores will have access to well-paid services and the possibility to provide them, from Santa Maria, to missions conducted by ESA and other space agencies," said the government official.
The government official also defended that the new 15-metre antenna, which will be installed within two months, will provide a "major contribution" to the future Azores International Research Center (AIR Center) with regard to Earth observation studies and the development of new businesses in the aerospace sector.
Brito e Abreu expressed the wish that the manager of the space station based on Santa Maria "be the country or the Region over the next 12 months," noting that, in this case, "ESA would become a client."
"We may use this infrastructure to provide services to other missions, creating more jobs," the government official said, adding that, at this time, the satellite station generates 10 direct jobs and "the goal for the next five years is to double this number."
The Regional Secretary for Science also said the Regional Government "remains committed to investing in other infrastructures on Santa Maria," stressing that "more projects involving space technologies will emerge under the future International Research Center."


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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