Under the auspices of the China-Brazil Joint Laboratory for Space Weather (CBJLSW), the Chief Scientist of the International Meridian Circle Program (IMCP), Prof. William Liu, visited between March 22-24, 2019, both the National Institute for Space Research (INPE) and the Mackenzie Presbyterian University, with the objective of discussing several aspects involving the participation of these two institutions in the effort for global monitoring of geospace environment.
Professor of Space Physics and a Special National Expert at the National Space Science Center of China (NSSC), William Liu is a well-known for his leadership in international scientific collaboration, having served on numerous boards and committees for space science, along both his current position and former occupation as program scientist for space environment at the Canadian Space Agency. Nowadays, his biggest challenge is to promote the mission of the IMCP, which is the integration and coordination of the space weather monitoring carried out independently by national programs operating along the meridians 120°E – 60°W and adjacencies. Within the framework of the International Meridian Program, the CBJLSW was inaugurated in São José dos Campos on August 6th, 2014, which has since been granting postdoctoral fellowships to Brazilian researchers and constantly acquiring valuable scientific instruments, supported through special funds provided by the Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS).
Prof. Liu began his visit to the INPE on March 22, giving a talk about the role and structure of the IMCP to an audience consisting mostly of students and researchers, where he advocated an extensive use of international cooperation as a tool for the common development of space science. The seminar was followed by a poster session presented by CBJLSW postdoctoral fellows, as well as a guided tour by several laboratories. The day also included a welcome and institutional greetings from the INPE’s Director, Dr. Ricardo Galvão, succeeded by discussions regarding the solid cooperation that INPE continues to enjoy with NSSC.
During his second day of visit in Brazil, Prof. Liu and his delegation were at the Mackenzie University, where they were briefed about recent research lines and facilities of the Center of Radio Astronomy and Astrophysics at Mackenzie (CRAAM). In this occasion, the group highlighted strategies to support a collaboration in the near future. The agenda was completed on Sunday (24/03) at the Pierre Kaufmann Radio Observatory in Atibaia, that is maintained by INPE and Mackenzie.
The IMCP is open to dialogue with national institutions who wish to join the program as a way of enhancing the degree of scientific relevance of their regional networks for space weather monitoring. Recently, Central European nations have shown an interest in joining the IMCP by proposing to assimilate other meridians into this big science initiative.