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S. Korea, U.S. to sign pact on sharing data from pollution-monitoring satellites

All Headlines 15:25 December 11, 2018

SEJONG, Dec. 11 (Yonhap) -- South Korea will sign a memorandum of understanding with the United States this week on joint use of data from their separate geostationary pollution-monitoring satellites to be launched in 2020, a state-run think tank said Tuesday.

The National Institute of Environmental Research said it will form the agreement with the U.S. National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) at the headquarters of the U.S. space agency in Washington the next day.

The institute affiliated with the environment ministry is developing a geostationary air quality-monitoring satellite, called the Geostationary Environmental Monitoring Spectrometer (GEMS), while NASA and the European Union are planning on launching other pollution-monitoring instruments TEMPO and Sentinel 4, respectively.

These satellites are placed in a geostationary orbit about 36,000 kilometers above the equator.

Under the agreement, the institute and NASA will analyze datasets created by GEMS and TEMPO, and share their satellite technologies.

GEMS, TEMPO and Sentinel 4 are to monitor air pollution over Northeast Asia, North America, and Europe and Africa, respectively.

By 2019, the ministry will inject more than 150 billion won (US$132.86 million) into the development of the satellites, which began in 2012.

S. Korea, U.S. to sign pact on sharing data from pollution-monitoring satellites - 1

namsh@yna.co.kr
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