The Brazilian Government on Monday said that United States and Brazil have negotiated an accord to safeguard U.S. space technology for commercial rockets lifting off from its launch site near the equator. The agreement will be signed next week during President Jair Bolsonaro’s visit to Washington.
With this agreement, Brazil is expected to get $300 billion a year of space launch business by inviting U.S. companies who are interested in launching small satellites at a lower cost from Alcantara base which is run by the Brazilian Air Force on the country’s north coast.
This base is located close to the equator hence all launches burn 30% less fuel as well as carry larger payloads. Last year U.S. and Brazil signed a Space Situational Awareness (SSA) agreement at the time of U.S. Defense Secretary James Mattis’s visit to Brasilia.
In December 2017, Lockheed Martin Corp & Boeing Co have also visited the Alcantara space center which usually attracts smaller firms such as Tucson. Previous attempt for U.S. – Brazilian space partnership was scuttled in 2003 as TSA ran into resistance from the leftist government of former president Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva.