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Nicosia becomes permanent venue for MUAN Mars scientists

October 19, 2018 at 6:16pm
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Top scientists from around the world who study the upper atmosphere of Mars have decided that Nicosia will become their permanent venue for the meetings they hold every two years.

The scientists, members of the Mars Upper Atmosphere Network (MUAN), held a meeting in Nicosia this week during which they discussed about international co-operation for future exploration missions to Mars. Their meeting was hosted by the Cyprus Space Exploration Organisation (CSEO) as part of CSEO’s ongoing efforts to develop the sector on the island. The Nicosia Municipality was its strategic partner.

A press conference was held on Friday in Nicosia during which they announced that Nicosia will become their permanent venue for the meetings they hold every two years.

Professor at the Swedish Institute of Space Physics Hermann Opgenoorth, who organises the MUAN meetings, said that Nicosia was chosen due to its strategic geographic location.  He said that CSEO has offered to host the official website of MUAN in which all their discussions, publications, results, papers, will be published.

“We intend to return to Cyprus every second year as a permanent house and then we will have meetings around the world. We will also have topical meetings and we intend to come to Cyprus for that,” he announced.

President of CSEO George Danos welcomed the decision of the MUAN network while on behalf of the Mayor of Nicosia, Municipal Counselor Chrysanthos Fakas said that Nicosia is proud to be the permanent venue of the network.

NASA Chief scientist James Green said that “it is the first time he came to Cyprus but surely it will not be the last.” He talked about the MUAN meeting, noting that studying the upper atmosphere of Mars is important to understand the climate change that happened on the planet and thus understand what might happen on Earth.

During the meeting, Danos announced the establishment of the Cyprus National Committee on Space Research.

Marcello Coradini, renowned top ESA/NASA scientist and Chairman of the CSEO International Council praised the academic community in Cyprus, saying that they are extremely competent and basically “could represent a country ten times or even 20 times bigger than Cyprus.”

“It is a big asset for the country,” he said.

The summit was attended by top-level scientists from the US, such as the Chief Scientist of NASA James Green and other top officials and scientists from Russia, Europe, the UAE and India.

During their meetings in Cyprus, the scientists discussed  about the future of Mars space missions as well as international cooperation.

(Cyprus News Agency)