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The 17-year-old astronomer will be Ceara’s first analog astronaut

The 17-year-old astronomer will be Ceara’s first analog astronaut

Posted 1/26/2023 7:17 PM / Updated 1/26/2023 8:48 PM

(Credit: Chico Souza)

Curious about the world and its causes, 17-year-old student from Ceará María Larissa Pereira, or Laritrix, as she prefers to be called, makes history as the first analog astronaut from the Igbo region, within Ceará to be certified by NASA. To obtain the title, you will take a course at a space camp in Brasilia, where you will study theoretical and practical orbital mechanics and also participate in simulations of space missions.

The astronomer, who promotes science publishing and mentorship projects to encourage young people like herself to travel across universes, decided that looking at the stars was part of her great purpose in life. “One night, I was with my grandmother on the porch of the house and she asked me several questions. I asked her everything. One of the curiosities was about the names of the stars and she immediately pointed to Três Marias and part of the constellation Orion. But since my grandmother did not know enough to answer the others That was the case,” he recalled.

Today, Larittrix is ​​best known for its efforts to bring astronomy to teens who are more or less as determined to change the world as it is, who will be an analog astronaut, that is, it will participate in experiments on Earth through Wogel Electronics Art (WEA).

According to Larittrix, this is a unique training opportunity. Overseas reference, the method has recently reached Brazil. “Wogel was always a dream for me. I thought I wasn’t up to those criteria, even because it was such an expensive course. I never thought of winning a scholarship and going to Brasilia, and even better yet, getting sponsorship and a full scholarship,” he says.

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Laretrex is a medalist at State, National and International Academic Olympiads. During her career as a citizen scientist, she has already discovered 11 potential asteroids and nearly 2,000 galaxies in space. To come to Brasília to participate in two days of training, I had the support of the Municipality of Perez Ferreira (CE), where she lives, the College of Engineering of Sorocaba (Facens), and the companies of Força Meninas and Medalhei Olímpicos Científicas.

“I won this award for sending an application to Wogel and for being nominated by Lorrane Olivlet, of the In Space Group. I am very grateful to everyone, from the bottom of my heart, for so much encouragement. I hope to really experience space science in a practical and playful way, which is Wogel’s suggestion. In addition, I want to represent Ciara well,” he says.

Student collects over 50 signed and original certificates of courses and the like on behalf of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), 17 others from the Federal University of Rio de Janeiro (UFRJ), Federal University of Ceará (UFC), SME Support Service Small (Al-Sabra) and other institutions of great interest to the academic community and researchers.

Recently, she was honored by Perez Ferreira’s board of advisors with a motion of applause, being the first of her age to receive such recognition.

In addition to astronomy, Laritrix’s desire is to become a teacher and spread science. “I’ve tried to content myself only with astronomy and the research itself, but I can’t. I carry this social responsibility with me to help those in need and democratize access to science,” he explains. One of her dreams is to study education and astronomy abroad, and when she returns, learn everything she learned and transform education, especially in public schools. He also dreams of showing the beauty and power of the educational model STEM – an acronym in English that brings together the fields of science; Technique; Engineering and mathematics.

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* Trained under Jáder Rezende