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The Government of Canada Launches Final Stage of RADARSAT Constellation Project

SAINTE-ANNE-DE-BELLEVUE, QUEBEC -- (Marketwire) -- 01/09/13 -- Today, the Honourable Christian Paradis, Minister of Industry and Minister responsible for the Canadian Space Agency (CSA), launched the next and final stage of Canada's RADARSAT Constellation project.

"Our Government is ensuring we have the tools to assert our sovereignty, monitor and manage our resources, and keep watch over our vast territory and coastal areas," said Minister Paradis. "The world-class RADARSAT Constellation Mission keeps Canada at the forefront of the design and operation of radar satellites."

The RADARSAT Constellation Mission will provide complete coverage of Canada's vast land mass, oceans and coastal approaches, at least once per day, and up to four times daily in the high Arctic. Data produced by the Constellation will support key Government of Canada priorities related to: the Northern Strategy, especially in the Arctic; Defence; Safety, Sovereignty and Security; the Environment; Natural Resources; and Agriculture.

"Canada has a hard-won reputation for expertise in a highly competitive global environment. Through strategic investments in R&D and space, our Government is fostering industrial innovation, promoting commercialization, creating high-quality jobs, and positioning our industry for continued growth in the global economy," added Minister Paradis.

In Budget 2010, the Government of Canada allocated funds to complete the design and begin construction. The contract with MacDonald Dettwiler and Associates, announced today, will lead to the completion of construction; the launch of the three satellites, planned for 2018; and the first year of operation of the mission.

The RADARSAT Constellation Mission project is led by the CSA and supported by its principal users: the Department of National Defence, Fisheries and Oceans Canada, Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, Environment Canada, Natural Resources Canada and Public Safety Canada.

For more details about the RADARSAT Constellation Mission, visit: http://www.asc-csa.gc.ca/eng/satellites/radarsat/default.asp

Backgrounder

RADARSAT Constellation Mission (RCM) will support the maritime surveillance requirements of the Canadian Armed Forces, the Canadian Coast Guard, Transport Canada, Fisheries and Oceans and Environment Canada by providing wide area surveillance of Canada's remote areas and marine approaches. The daily coverage of marine areas will also support fisheries, ice and iceberg, pollution and integrated ocean and coastal zone monitoring.

The RCM will:


--  Support the ecosystem monitoring requirements of Natural Resources
    Canada, Environment Canada, Parks Canada and Agriculture and Agri-Food
    Canada by enabling wide area change detection, supporting water quantity
    monitoring, as well as wetlands mapping and coastal change monitoring. 
    
--  Support disaster management requirements, both in Canada and globally. 
    
--  Provide high resolution, all-weather imagery of most places in the world
    on a daily basis. 

The RCM would also support the Government's foreign policy objectives by contributing satellite images for international security and humanitarian missions. Domestically, the data from RCM is critical for disaster mitigation, warning, response and recovery. Disaster types supported include flood monitoring and relief, oil spills, changes in the permafrost in northern Canada, volcano and earthquake warning and hurricane monitoring.

RCM data will also be marketed to commercial users and value-added service providers who make use of earth observation data to provide an array of information solutions such as environmental consulting, geomatics, resource management, with applications in various industrial sectors.

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