Amazon has revealed it is on the cusp of a potential agreement with the Chilean government to begin datamining the countries masses of star data and housing it on its AWS digital cloud. The deal is being viewed favorably by Chile President Sebastián Piñera who has been looking to diversify the country's economy and reduce its economic reliance on copper.
Chile is home to one of the world's best locations for stargazing, the Atacama Desert, and the country soaks up 70% of all global astronomy funding. However, 300 nights a year of high-definition stargazing also produces enormous amounts of unanalyzed astrodata, which has proven to be a burden of the IT centers tasked with storing it.
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The deal may also prove to be more mutually beneficial than it appears, as it has been claimed that Jeff Bezos is using this as an opportunity to finally get a solid foothold in Latin America – a region in which Amazon has historically struggled. Also, all the information garnered from the astrodata could also be used to progress powerful AI tools and other machine-learning models which benefit from such large datasets.
Speaking to Reuters, AWS general manager for Latin America, the Caribbean and Canada, Jeffrey Kratz, said, "Chile is a very important country for AWS. We kept being amazed about the incredible work on astronomy and the telescopes, as real proof points on innovation and technology working together."
"The Chilean telescopes can benefit from the cloud by eliminating the heavy lifting of managing IT," he added.