Canadian Space Agency Awards $9M in Technology Contracts

The Canadian Space Agency (CSA) announced on Twitter yesterday the first round of contracts for its Space Technology Development Program AO 6.

All told, the CSA awarded $9 million in 14 contracts to 8 companies. MDA was the recipient of 6 contracts valued at just over $3.5 million.

Multiple sources tell SpaceQ that there are more contract awards to be announced and this is confirmed by a notice on the CSA website which states that “contributions, names of the companies and projects will continue to be announced as soon as the funding is given. Please visit this page again for updates.”

The Space Technology Development Program (STDP) is an annual space research and development program with $20 million in funding. Yesterday’s awards suggests that there could be as much as $11 million in contracts to be announced.

The STDP AO 6 was announced on August 12, 2019. It has five categories.

  1. AO 6.1 Space R&D – Advanced technologies: Non-repayable contributions of up to $1 million for R&D space projects with the potential of economic benefits in the short to medium term, between 2 and 5 years. Initial technology readiness level (TRL) for these projects is expected to be TRL 4 or TRL 5.
  2. AO 6.2 Space R&D – Small businesses: Non-repayable contributions of up to $250,000 for R&D space projects carried out by small businesses.
  3. AO 6.3 Space R&D – Feasibility studies: Non-repayable contributions of up to $100,000 for feasibility studies related to space system design projects for technologies with strong commercial potential.
  4. AO 6.4 Space R&D – Next wave technologies: Non-repayable contributions of up to $500,000 for R&D space projects with the potential of economic benefits in the medium to long term, between 5 and 10 years.
  5. AO 6.5 Space R&D – Suborbital Capability Demonstration: Non-repayable contributions of up to $300,000 for R&D space projects with the potential of economic benefits in the short to medium term, between 2 and 5 years.

It should be noted the CSA postponed A0 6.5 in January, the Suborbital Capability Demonstration. No reason was given.

The contracts announced yesterday include:

AO 6.1 Space R&D – Advanced technologies

  • Burloak Technologies Inc. ($1 million) – Oakville, Ontario: Hot Isostatic Pressing of Additively Manufactured Space-Use Components in Aluminum and Titanium.
  • UrtheCast Corporation ($999,916) – Vancouver, British Columbia: UrthePlatform Analytics Engine.
  • MacDonald, Dettwiler and Associates Inc. ($935,132) – Brampton, Ontario: Robotics Servicing System (RSS) Arm-joint Development.
  • MDA Systems Ltd. ($408,312) – Richmond, BC: Onboard Closed-loop Tracking for Space Situational Awareness Applications.
  • SED Systems a division of Calian Ltd. ($970,420) – Saskatoon, Saskatchewan: Ultra Wideband Satellite Modem.
  • MDA ($1 million) – Ste-Anne-de-Bellevue, Quebec: Advanced Antennas and Payload Technologies for Software Defined Satellites.
  • MDA ($1 million) – Ste-Anne-de-Bellevue, Quebec: Beam Hopping Technology Development for HTS Communication Systems.
  • COM DEV Ltd. (Honeywell) ($743,662) – Cambridge, Ontario: Integrated Assembly for Next Evolution Satellite.
  • COM DEV Ltd. (Honeywell) ($814,906) – Cambridge, Ontario: OISL Communication subsystem advancement.

AO 6.2 Space R&D – Small businesses

  • QEYnet Inc. ($243,983) – Vaughan, Ontario: Vulnerability Mitigation of a QKD Satellite Rekeying Device.
  • Space Codesign Systems Inc. ($179,400) – Hardware/Software Codesign Methodology for high-performance on-board processing applied on artificial intelligence of space.

AO 6.3 Space R&D – Feasibility studies

  • MacDonald, Dettwiler and Associates Inc. (formerly Neptec Design Group Ltd.) ($99,696) – Kanata, Ontario: AI – Enabled Non-Cooperative Sensor Mission Validation Tool.
  • MDA ($100,000) – Ste-Anne-de-Bellevue, Quebec: Large-Scale True Time Delay Optical Beamforming for RF Phased Array.

AO 6.4 Space R&D – Low Technology Readiness Level:

  • Laboratoire Reaction Dynamics ($500,000) – Saint-Jean-sur-Richelieu, Quebec: Integrated high-efficiency catalytic ignition system for rocket engines.

About Marc Boucher

Marc Boucher
Boucher is an entrepreneur, writer, editor & publisher. He is the founder of SpaceQ Media Inc. and CEO and co-founder of SpaceRef Interactive Inc. Boucher has 20 years working in various roles in the space industry and a total of 28 years as a technology entrepreneur including creating Maple Square, Canada's first internet directory and search engine.

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