Celeste – Public streetlight for light pollution prevention.

The Schist Villages are part of one of the three Dark Sky reserves in the country certified as a "Starlight Tourist Destination" by the Starlight Foundation and supported by UNESCO, the World Tourism Organization, and IAC. This certification recognizes the exceptional conditions of these Cross-Border areas for observing the Universe from the Earth's surface and attests to the commitment among public, private, and scientific entities to their maintenance. The growing demand for tourist activities for observing the night sky became evident from 2020 onwards due to the pandemic, driven by a widespread recognition of the sustainability of Portuguese astrotourism. The excellent conditions for observing celestial phenomena from Porto da Balsa, in the parish of Fajão, which is part of the 27 Schist Villages, have enabled the mapping of the Cosmos since 2009 by the Telecommunications Institute, with the implementation of the radioastronomical station for the development of space sciences, elevating the municipality of Pampilhosa da Serra to a Space Observatory serving the Ministry of National Defense.

The project Celeste - public streetlights for light pollution prevention, focuses on the conception, development, and production of luminaires that respect comfort and safety standards without compromising the observation of the night sky. The first phase is dedicated to researching the phenomenon of light pollution, which has worsened with technological advancements, and to designing equipment that allows for the observation of the starry sky and circadian rhythm of ecosystems. The second phase focuses on prototyping the project for technical validation, data monitoring, system optimization, and raising awareness among local stakeholders. The last phase will be dedicated to pre-series production for pilot implementation in the village of Álvaro, integrated into a local strategy to support entrepreneurship and technological innovation, aimed at all territories seeking to combat light pollution. This phase includes actions to disseminate the economic and environmental results achieved.

University of Aveiro (promoter)
Municipality of Pampilhosa da Serra
ADXTUR - Agency for the Touristic Development of the Schist Villages
Municipality of Oleiros
Institute of Telecommunications


Start/end date Sep 2022 — Oct 2025

Research groups

Lead institution

Host institutions

Funding amount € 149 952

Duration 37 months

Project code 25.120

Lead researcher
Eduardo Noronha