Thu, Nov 03, 2005
Would Bring Autonomy To Country's Communications... And Predict
In a move adding
further credence to China's emergence as a viable competitor in
space -- as well as bolstering Venezuela's presence on the global
stage -- the South American country has finalized a deal to buy a
satellite from the Chinese space program. The telecom satellite --
to be launched from China in 2008 -- would give Venezuela a
home-owned source of communications, allowing the nation to be
self-sufficient in that area.
According to the Associated Press, the satellite would bring
telecommunications service across the entire 325,142 sq. mi. area
of the South American country, including areas covered by vast
rainforests and largely undeveloped plains.
The coverage would allow telephone and Internet access to
those areas as well, allowing the government of President Hugo
Chavez to transmit educational programs and other information
(those are the government's words, not ANN's) to populations
previously cut off from such communications.
According to government sources, the satellite -- with an
estimated life of 15 years -- might also be equipped with
technology allowing the nation to predict natural disasters such as
floods. Chavez has previously stressed the satellite is intended
for only peaceful purposes.
China -- third only to the US and Russia in sending humans into
space -- has advertised its space program to nations either
politically or economically disinclined from reaching out to those
nations' space programs, in a bid to become a major player in the
race for space.
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