MacDonald, Dettwiler and Associates Ltd. (MDA) announced yesterday that the Canadian Space Agency has authorized MDA to start the design phase (C) of the RADARSAT Constellation Mission. The value of this contract is limited to $11.8 million and is expected to be completed by June 11, 2010. The announcement comes two weeks after the federal government unveiled it’s budget which included funding for the RADARSAT Constellation.
The RADARSAT Constellation Mission is a three-satellite configuration and an evolution of the RADARSAT Program with the objective of ensuring C-band data continuity and earth observation. The constellation is scalable to six satellites if the decision to expand it is made.
Using its Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR) the constellation will have three main uses:
– Maritime surveillance (ice, wind, oil pollution and ship monitoring)
– Disaster management (mitigation, warning, response and recovery)
– Ecosystem monitoring (forestry, agriculture, wetlands and coastal change monitoring)
The constellation will provide complete coverage of Canada’s land and oceans offering an average daily revisit, as well as daily access to 95% of the world to Canadian and International users. The mission development has begun in 2005, with satellite launches planned for 2014 and 2015.