Group of scientists create the Brazilian Network of Astrobiology
Communication of LNLS on 05/24/2013
Astrobiology is a multidisciplinary field of research devoted to study the origin, evolution, distribution and future of life on Earth and, eventually, on other places on the Universe. Recently it was created the Brazilian Network of Astrobiology (Rede Brasileira de Astrobiologia – RBA), linked to the Research Unit in Astrobiology (NAP-Astrobio) of the Universidade de Sao Paulo (USP). NAP-Astrobio is an international partner of important institutions in the area, such as the NASA Astrobiology Institute (NAI) and the European Astrobiology Networks Association (EANA), and it has been spearheading efforts to formalize the area in the country.
Douglas Galante, coordinator of the Toroidal Grating Monochromator (TGM) beamline at LNLS, is one of the creators of this collaboration network. According to him, this network is the result of a group of researchers who are sure that high impact science has to be made in a collaborative and interdisciplinary environment. "It aims not only to link Brazilian researchers interested on studying life in a more general perspective, but also to foster collaborations and interchange of people and knowledge with our colleagues in Latin America, North America, Europe and other regions".
Strongly grounded on the study of life as we know it on our planet, Astrobiology encompasses many disciplines, such as Biology, Astronomy, Physics, Chemistry, Geology, etc. Astrobiology can be used as a powerful tool to promote the integration of knowledge for a better understanding of the phenomenon of life in the Universe, using the full force of the modern scientific method. "Brazil has an enormous unexplored biodiversity, we have fantastic research laboratories, such as LNLS/CNPEM, and we have great scientists. If we can integrate these resources, we can certainly push forward our knowledge of the connections of life with our planet and the Universe", says Galante.
The RBA is open to researchers and students of all levels who actually work with research, education and public outreach of Astrobiology and related issues. Once accepted as member of the network, the participants will have their information made available in a public online and searchable database.
The Network has, as one of its major objectives, the promotion of a greater integration between researchers from different fields of science and regions of the country, since multi and interdisciplinarity are the core of Astrobiology. RBA also aims to promote actions to provided better training for the future generation of students and researchers in Astrobiology, thus increasing the quantity and quality of scientific publications and materials in Portuguese on the subject. To get more information, visit: www.astrobiologia.net.br.