This article needs additional citations for verification. Please help improve this article by adding citations to reliable sources. Unsourced material may be challenged and removed.Find sources: "National Institute for Space Research" – news · newspapers · books · scholar · JSTOR (September 2019) (Learn how and when to remove this message)
National Institute for Space Research
Instituto Nacional de Pesquisas Espaciais
FormationApril 22, 1971
Legal statusActive
PurposeSpace research
HeadquartersSão José dos Campos,
São Paulo
Coordinates23°12′25″S 45°51′37″W / 23.20694°S 45.86028°W / -23.20694; -45.86028
Official language
Gilvan Sampaio de Oliveira
Parent organization
Ministry of Science, Technology and Innovations
R$79.9 million (2021)[1]
Part of the satellite testing facility at INPE
An Anechoic chamber at INPE

The National Institute for Space Research (Portuguese: Instituto Nacional de Pesquisas Espaciais, INPE) is a research unit of the Brazilian Ministry of Science, Technology and Innovations, the main goals of which are fostering scientific research and technological applications and qualifying personnel in the fields of space and atmospheric sciences, space engineering, and space technology. While INPE is the civilian research center for aerospace activities, the Brazilian Air Force's General Command for Aerospace Technology is the military arm. INPE is located in the city of São José dos Campos, São Paulo.


On August 13, 1961, President Jânio Quadros signed a decree which created the Organizing Group for the National Commission on Space Activities (COGNAE).[2] This group would give rise to the current National Institute for Space Research. COGNAE, which shortly after became known as CNAE, started its activities by stimulating, coordinating and supporting studies on space related areas, besides breeding a team of skilled researchers and establishing cooperation with leading nations on the space area. On April 22, 1971, the National Institute for Space Research (INPE) was created, subordinated to the National Research Council (CNPq). Its first Director was the electronic engineer Fernando de Mendonça. INPE would be the main civilian executive organ for space research development in accordance with the directives of the Brazilian Commission for Space Activities (COBAE), an advisory organ to the President. Until the mid-Seventies, the main projects carried out by INPE included the usage of meteorological, communications and earth observation satellites. This engendered other projects such as:

INPE entered a new era when the Brazilian government approved the Complete Brazilian Space Mission (MECB) at the end of the 1970s. The institute, besides research and applications, started the development of the space technology for specific needs, essential for a country of continental dimensions with immense uninhabited areas. On March 15, 1985, the Ministry of Science and Technology (MCT) was created and INPE became part of it as an independent organ of the Direct Administration. During the 1980s, INPE started developing priority programs such as:

It also kept track of other countries' research on the space area, facilitating collaboration and partnership with them. During this period it also established its Integration and Tests Laboratory (LIT) which develops highly specialized activities essential to the Brazilian Space Program. In the 1990s, the first Brazilian satellite (SCD-1) was launched. Since 1994, the Brazilian Space Agency has been responsible for Brazil's space program. INPE works in close cooperation with the agency. In 1998, the second Brazilian satellite (SCD-2) was successfully launched, performing even better than the first one. CBERS 1 was launched in 1999, CBERS 2 in 2003 and CBERS 2B in 2007. In August 2019, the chief of the agency, Ricardo Galvão, was fired by science minister Marcos Pontes after a period where Galvão had a public argument with Brazilian president Jair Bolsonaro over the validity of data from DETER, a satellite system monitoring deforestation. Bolsonaro stated that the data had been altered to attack his government and Galvão called him a coward in response.[3]


# Dircetor Period Note
1 1963 - 1976 1st director from INPE.[4]
Nelson de Jesus Parada
1976 - 1985 [5]
3 1985 - 1989 [6]
Márcio Nogueira Barbosa
1989 - 2001 He left the institute to take up a post at UNESCO.[7][8]
Volker Kirchhoff
2001 - 2001 Interim Director.[9][10]
Luiz Carlos Moura Miranda
2001 - 2005 Assuming post in 2001,[10] resigned on 26 April 2005[11] after a dispute over funding.[12]
Leonel Perondi
2005 - 2005 Interim Director.[13]
6 2005 - 2012 [11][14]
Leonel Perondi
2012 - 2016 [13][15]
8 2016 - 2019 Assuming post in 2016,[15] he was exonerated in 2019 after publicly defending INPE's work against the Jair Bolsonaro government's attacks [pt] in the context of Amazon deforestation, specifically during the 2019 fires.[16] Within the internal regulations the replacement occurred due to "a situation of loss of confidence".[17]
Darcton Policarpo Damião
2019 - 2020 Interim Director.[18][19]
Clezio Marcos de Nardin
2020 - 2023 In office between 2020[19] and 2023.[20]
Gilvan Sampaio de Oliveira
2023 Interim director.[21]

See also


  1. ^ Salvador Nogueira (August 17, 2020). "Agência Espacial Brasileira zera orçamento do Inpe para pesquisa em 2021". (in Portuguese). Retrieved March 1, 2021.
  2. ^ INPE. "História" (in Portuguese). Archived from the original on May 16, 2012. Retrieved March 1, 2021.
  3. ^ Brazilian institute head fired after clashing with nation’s president over deforestation data. Science (4 August 2019). Retrieved 23 August 2019.
  4. ^ "Cientista Fernando de Mendonça conhece o Observatório da Indústria da FIEC" (in Brazilian Portuguese). 2019-10-02. Retrieved 2022-05-18.
  5. ^ "Nelson de Jesus Parada" (in Brazilian Portuguese). Retrieved 2022-05-18.
  6. ^ "INPE/MCTI lamenta falecimento do ex Ministro Marco Antonio Raupp" (in Brazilian Portuguese). 2021-07-24. Retrieved 2022-05-18.
  7. ^ "Márcio Barbosa assume a direção do INPE" (PDF) (in Brazilian Portuguese). 1989-01-30. Retrieved 2022-05-18.
  8. ^ "Diretor do Inpe assume cargo na Unesco" (in Brazilian Portuguese). 2000-11-30. Retrieved 2022-05-18.
  9. ^ "FHC indica diretor interino do Inpe" (in Brazilian Portuguese). 2001-02-22. Retrieved 2022-05-18.
  10. ^ a b "Novo diretor do INPE toma posse hoje" (in Brazilian Portuguese). 2001-10-29. Retrieved 2022-05-18.
  11. ^ a b "Comitê de Busca inicia trabalho de escolha do novo diretor" (in Brazilian Portuguese). 2005-05-11. Retrieved 2022-05-18.
  12. ^ "Disputa por verba derruba diretor do Inpe" (in Brazilian Portuguese). 2005-04-28. Retrieved 2022-05-18.
  13. ^ a b "Leonel Perondi é o novo diretor do INPE" (in Brazilian Portuguese). 2012-05-14. Retrieved 2022-05-18.
  14. ^ "DISCURSO DE POSSE DO NOVO DIRETOR DO INPE" (in Brazilian Portuguese). 2005-12-12. Retrieved 2022-05-18.
  15. ^ a b "INPE has a new director" (248 ed.). October 2016. Retrieved 2022-05-18.
  16. ^ "Ricardo Magnus Osório Galvão: The physicist who would not bend" (293 ed.). July 2020. Retrieved 2022-05-18.
  17. ^ "Diretor do Inpe diz que discurso sobre Bolsonaro 'causou constrangimento' e será exonerado" (in Brazilian Portuguese). 2019-08-02. Retrieved 2022-05-18.
  18. ^ "Nomeação de diretor interino do Inpe é publicada em 'Diário Oficial'" (in Brazilian Portuguese). 2019-08-14. Retrieved 2022-05-18.
  19. ^ a b "Conheça a trajetória de Clezio Marcos De Nardin, o novo diretor do Inpe" (in Brazilian Portuguese). 2020-08-02. Retrieved 2022-05-18.
  20. ^ "MCom e MCTI terão ampla troca de cargos, com exonerações de Lula". 2023-01-02. Retrieved 2022-01-04.
  21. ^ INPE [@inpe_mct] (January 4, 2023). "INPE no Twitter" (Tweet) – via Twitter.