Canadian Manufacturing

MDA nabs game-changer radar satellite contract

The contract is expected to extend over a period of seven years and brings MDA's current backlog to approximately $2.9 billion.

RICHMOND, B.C.—Communications engineering company MacDonald, Dettwiler and Associates Ltd. (MDA), has won a $706-million contract with the Canadian Space Agency to build, launch and provide initial operations for the RADARSAT Constellation Mission (RCM).

The contract is expected to extend over a period of seven years and brings MDA’s current backlog to approximately $2.9 billion.

RCM is a constellation of three satellites providing around-the-clock coverage. Information obtained from RCM includes repeat imaging of the same area at different times of day, dramatically improving the frequency of monitoring coastal zones, northern territories, Arctic waterways and other areas of strategic and defence interest.

RCM will also incorporate automated identification system technology, which when combined with the powerful radar images, supports the immediate detection and identification of ships worldwide.

Already a leading supplier of radar-based surveillance and security, MDA’s service offering is expected to expand as it leverages RCM’s repeat imaging capabilities. The information provided by the RCM satellites will enable MDA to meet a larger range of recurring monitoring needs in growing market segments such as oil and gas, mining, defence and security, well into the next decade.

“This is a major step forward for MDA as a leader in the growing global surveillance and intelligence market” said Daniel Friedmann, MDA’s president and CEO. “With this contract, MDA has a strong foundation for continued development of its space missions, satellite ground systems, radar payload and geospatial services businesses.”

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