FAB follows a scientific experiment in the Amazon atmosphereFAB follows a scientific experiment in the Amazon atmosphere

Impacts of climate change on the functioning of the Amazonian ecosystem is among the possible results of the observation

The Brazilian Air Force (FAB) is accompanying an unprecedented scientific experiment in the Amazon, called CAFE-Brazil – Chemistry of the Amazonian Atmosphere-Field Experiment in Brazil. For two months, December and January, the Amazon atmosphere will be analyzed in detail, with a special airplane, a boat from the Amazonas State University (UEA), measurements at the ATTO (Amazon Tall Tower Observatory) tower, and a new radar in Balbina, located about 150 km north of Manaus.

The CAFE-Brazil experiment is a partnership between the National Institute for Space Research (INPE), the National Institute for Amazon Research (INPA), the University of São Paulo (USP), and UEA, with the German side coordinated by the Max Planck Institute for Chemistry.

The scientists intend to understand the natural chemical processes in the interaction between the forest, the atmosphere and the intense hydrological cycle that are coupled by processes not yet fully known. The results should help to explain how, for example, the forest influences the climate in the region and the impacts of climate change on the functioning of the Amazon ecosystem.

With this in mind, FAB received a request from the Ministry of Defense to authorize the German HALO (High Altitude and Long Range Research Aircraft) to fly over national territory. After a thorough analysis by the Aerospace Operations Command (COMAE), it was advised for the continuity of the operational aspects, related to the flight. [Click here to download the original image]

 The flights, which will cover the entire Amazon, will follow defined standards for measuring vertical profiles from ground to high atmosphere and with extensive horizontal transects. The plan also includes so-called propeller flights, during which HALO will spiral from low altitudes to an altitude of 15 kilometers. The aircraft measurements will be key to discovering how atmospheric oxidation processes occur in the troposphere above the Amazon rainforest and how they influence the formation and growth of aerosol particles, which are of central importance as cloud condensation nuclei.

To accompany the experiment, COMAE sent Major Specialist in Photography Edinelson Ferreira de Sena, PhD student in Applied Geosciences, to participate as an aerial observer and analyst of the airborne sensor systems, with the purpose of providing the necessary security for the fulfillment of the planning and execution of flights in national territory. “Having the opportunity to get to know the project and experience this experiment is something unique, since science is fundamental for defining preservation and conservation strategies for the Amazon Rainforest. Moreover, as a specialist in Remote Sensing, I consider it fair and perfect to put into practice innovative methodologies for data collection and analysis, for the sake of order and progress in Brazil,” concludes Major Sena.

*** Translated by the DEFCONPress FYI Team ***

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