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Space Technology Contribution For Sustainable Development In The Amazon Floodplain


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E. M. L. de Moraes Novo, J. L. Stech & C. C. F. Barbosa


This paper reports the results of using space technology, namely remote sensing and data collection platforms, to gather information on spatial and temporal variability in the Amazon Floodplain environment. Recent government policies caused an increased search for new frontiers for soybean plantations. To assess the impact of those new developments into the Amazon floodplain, since 2002 a project has been carried out in a floodplain lake, Curuai Lake, set near Santarém, Pará State. The first step in the project was to use a series of Landsat-TM images to seasonally monitor water exchanges of the Terra Firme Rivers and Amazon River and the floodplain lakes. Based on this study a suitable site was selected to install an automatic monitoring system, which allows for quasi-continuous in situ measurements of a pool of atmospheric and aquatic variables. The collected data is sent through a satellite link to researchers. These data are submitted to a series of analyses and stored in a database. As the program continues, there will be base line information against which environmental impacts can be checked and enforcement undertaken to guarantee a sustainable development for the region. Keywords: space technology, remote sensing, automatic environmental monitoring system. 1 Introduction The Amazon basin is the largest on Earth and is characterized by a dense drainage flowing into the Solimões/Amazon River (Amazon River). The Amazon River and its tributaries drain an area of around 7 million km 2 that receives an average annual precipitation of 2500 mm [1]. On the slopes of the Andes the precipitation can reach 5000 per year, whereas in the northern and


space technology, remote sensing, automatic environmental monitoring system.