Brazilian Space Agency recognizes AIAB's work on behalf of the countryBrazilian Space Agency recognizes AIAB's work on behalf of the country

The importance of the work carried out by the Aerospace Industries Association of Brazil (AIAB) in favor of the progress of the strategic Brazilian space sector was recognized and honored during a ceremony marking the 30th anniversary of the Brazilian Space Agency (AEB) on Thursday (22) in Brasilia.

The event, held at the Itamaraty Palace, was attended by the Minister of State for Science, Technology and Innovation, Luciana Santos, and the Agency’s president, Marco Antonio Chamon, as well as representatives from various countries, such as the United States, China, Japan, South Korea, India, Austria and Italy.

Founded in February 1994, the AEB is the body responsible for coordinating and executing the policies and activities of the Brazilian Space Program.

The ceremony was marked by a tribute, in memoriam, to engineer Walter Bartels, who presided over the AIAB between 1995 and 2019 – he was the association’s longest-serving president. He died in January at the age of 84.

His legacy was revered by the AEB with an Honorable Mention for Space Merit “for his significant contribution to the development of Brazilian space activities”. The diploma was presented to the former president’s daughter, Mariana Bartels.

“For me, it’s very emotional to be here today because I see that my father achieved everything he wanted and left a legacy,” said Mariana.


Present at the ceremony, the current president of AIAB, Julio Shidara, was also honored with the Honorable Mention for Space Merit. The AEB highlighted his role as a full member of the Agency’s Superior Council as a representative of the industrial sector and his contribution to the negotiations that culminated in the largest funding ever granted by the FNDCT (National Fund for Scientific and Technological Development) to encourage the Brazilian space industry.

In his brief speech, Shidara highlighted the fundamental role of recent economic subsidies for the sector in the process of mitigating Brazil’s current dependence on foreign satellites.

“It is the commitment of AIAB and the competent Brazilian space industry to contribute to gradually reducing Brazil’s uncomfortable dependence on foreign satellites to provide basic essential services to its citizens,” said the AIAB president.

“Practically everything we do in our daily lives depends on satellites. In the United States, for example, 14 out of a total of 16 critical infrastructure systems, such as electricity, communications, transportation and the financial system, among others, depend on GPS to function. In Brazil, the situation should be no different. Any problem with the US GPS could cause a national blackout,” he added.

“I share this tribute with all those who, directly or indirectly, have contributed and are contributing to strengthening the Brazilian space sector,” concluded Shidara.


Minister Luciana Santos recalled in her speech that a nation’s scientific and technological progress depends on building capacity.

“Since its foundation, the AEB has made efforts to promote the autonomy of the space sector,” she said. “We are convinced that a country’s technological autonomy is decisive for sovereignty and for economic and social growth. In this sense, the space sector is strategic.”

The president of the AEB, Marco Antonio Chamon, highlighted the achievements of the space sector in 30 years and projected the sector’s next challenges.

“The Brazilian Space Program is called upon to contribute to the great challenges facing Brazil and the world. We must work to eradicate poverty and hunger. To eliminate inequality in all its forms. To mitigate the impacts of climate change. To promote economic development. In short, we have to orient the Space Program towards the objectives of sustainable development. This is possible, and this is our project,” he said.

Also present were the directors of INPE (National Institute for Space Research), Clézio De Nardin, and DCTA (Department of Aerospace Science and Technology), Air Brigadier Maurício Augusto Silveira de Medeiros, as well as the Business Director of Correios, Sandro Alexandre Almeida, who launched a stamp commemorating AEB’s 30th anniversary.

*** Translated by DEFCONPress FYI Team ***

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