Bolivian satellite operators to be trained in China

Source:Xinhua Published: 2012-7-24 16:51:55

Bolivian space scientists are going to be trained in China in preparation for operating a Chinese-built satellite to be delivered late next year, the head of the Bolivian Space Agency (ABE) said Monday.

The ABE is selecting 74 scientists to receive training in China, ABE Director Ivan Zambrana said.

Specialists from all scientific fields such as chemistry, physics, mathematics, computer science, electronics and mechanical engineering are eligible to apply, he added.

Scientists and engineers aged between 30 and 50, whether recent graduates or experienced professionals, can submit their application on the ABE website for selection beginning on July 25.

"One of the main requirements is speaking English, because the majority of the courses will be given in that language," Zambrana said, adding that the training for operating the Tupac Katari satellite would last 21 months in China and three months in Bolivia.

The course, financed by satellite builder Great Wall Industry Corporation of China, will train selected Bolivian specialists to operate the satellite from two stations.

The first group of trainees will travel to China in October and return in 2013, followed by a second group to be trained in satellite design, and a third group in another area of specialty.

Zambrana noted that construction of the satellite was proceeding as scheduled and "the satellite's launching is planned for Dec. 20, 2013."

The Chinese company, a subsidiary of China's Aerospace Science and Technology Corporation, has guaranteed a set date of the satellite's production and launching, the ABE chief said.

The nearly 300 million-dollar telecommunications satellite project was announced in Beijing in August 2011.

About 45 million dollars would come from the Bolivian government and the other 250 million dollars come through a loan from China's Development Bank.

Posted in: Air & Space

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