Canadian Space Agency

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Canadian Space Agency
Agence Spatiale Canadienne (French)
Csa-asc logo.svg
Agency overview
Formed March 1, 1989; 27 years ago (1989-03-01)
Jurisdiction  Canada
Headquarters John H. Chapman Space Centre, Longueuil, Quebec
45°31′21″N 73°23′45″W / 45.52239°N 73.39582°W / 45.52239; -73.39582Coordinates: 45°31′21″N 73°23′45″W / 45.52239°N 73.39582°W / 45.52239; -73.39582
Employees 670[1]
Annual budget Increase C$483 million (2015-16)[1]
Minister responsible
Agency executive
  • Sylvain Laporte, President
Website www.asc-csa.gc.ca

The Canadian Space Agency (CSA; French: Agence Spatiale Canadienne, ASC) was established by the Canadian Space Agency Act which received Royal Assent on May 10, 1990. The agency reports to the federal Minister of Innovation, Science, and Economic Development. The current president of the Canadian Space Agency is Sylvain Laporte, who took the position March 9, 2015 following the announcement of his appointment on February 27, 2015.[2]

The headquarters of the CSA is located at the John H. Chapman Space Centre in Longueuil, Quebec. The agency also has offices in Ottawa, Ontario, at the David Florida Laboratory, and small liaison offices in Houston, Washington, and Paris.[1]

History[edit]

The coat of arms of the Canadian Space Agency granted on 25 July 1991, by the Canadian Heraldic Authority

The origins of the Canadian upper atmosphere and space program can be traced back to the end of the Second World War.[3] Between 1945 and 1960, Canada undertook a number of small launcher and satellite related projects under the aegis of defence research, including the development of the Black Brant rocket as well as series of advanced studies examining both orbital rendezvous and re-entry.[4] In 1957, scientists and engineers at the Canadian Defence Research Telecommunications Establishment (DRTE) under the leadership of John H. Chapman embarked on a project initially known simply as S-27 or the Topside Sounder Project. This work would soon lead to the development of Canada's first satellite known as Alouette 1.

With the launch of Alouette 1 in September 1962 Canada became the third country to put an artificial satellite into space. At the time, Canada only possessed upper atmospheric launch capabilities (sounding rockets), therefore, Alouette 1 was sent aloft by the American National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) from Vandenberg Air Force Base in Lompoc, California. The technical excellence of the satellite, which lasted for ten years instead of the expected one, prompted the further study of the ionosphere with the joint Canadian-designed, US-launched ISIS satellite program. This undertaking was designated an International Milestone of Electrical Engineering by IEEE in 1993. The launch of Anik A-1 in 1972 made Canada the first country in the world to establish its own domestic geostationary communication satellite network.[citation needed]

These and other space related activities in the 1980s compelled the Canadian government to promulgate the Canadian Space Agency Act which established the Canadian Space Agency. The Act received royal assent on May 10, 1990 and came into force on December 14, 1990.[5]

In 1999 the CSA was moved from project based to 'A-base' funding and given a fixed annual budget of $300 Million.[1] The actual budget varies from year to year due to additional earmarks and special projects.

The mandate of the Canadian Space Agency is to promote the peaceful use and development of space, to advance the knowledge of space through science and to ensure that space science and technology provide social and economic benefits for Canadians. The Canadian Space Agency's mission statement says that the agency is committed to leading the development and application of space knowledge for the benefit of Canadians and humanity.

Presidents[edit]

Cooperation with the European Space Agency[edit]

The CSA has been a cooperating state of the European Space Agency (ESA) since the 1970s,[14][15] and has several formal and informal partnerships and collaborative programs with space agencies in other countries, such as NASA, ISRO, JAXA, and SNSB.

Canada's collaboration with Europe in space activities predated both the European Space Agency and the Canadian Space Agency.[14] From 1968, Canada held observer status in the European Space Conference (ESC), a ministerial-level organization set up to determine future European space activities, and it continued in this limited role after ESA was created in 1975.[14] Since January 1, 1979, Canada has had the special status of a "Cooperating State" with the ESA,[15] paying for the privilege and also investing in working time and providing scientific instruments which are placed on ESA probes. Canada is allowed to participate in optional programs; it also has to contribute to the General Budget but not as much as associate membership would have entailed. This status was unique at the time and remains so today.

On 15 December 2010 the accord was renewed for a further 10 years, until 2020.[15] By virtue of this accord, Canada takes part in ESA deliberative bodies and decision-making and in ESA's programmes and activities. Canadian firms can bid for and receive contracts to work on programmes. The accord has a provision specifically ensuring a fair industrial return to Canada. The head of the Canadian delegation to ESA is the president of the Canadian Space Agency. As of February 2009, there are currently 30 Canadians that are employed as staff members at ESA. (Distributed over various ESA sites: 20 at ESTEC; 4 at ESOC; 4 at ESA HQ; 2 at ESRIN).

Canadian space program[edit]

Canadarm (right) during Space Shuttle mission STS-72
The Mobile Base System just before Canadarm2 installed it on the Mobile Transporter during STS-111

The Canadian Space Program is administered by the Canadian Space Agency. Canada has contributed technology, expertise and personnel to the world space effort, especially in collaboration with ESA and NASA.

In addition to its astronauts and satellites, some of the most notable Canadian technological contributions to space exploration include the Canadarm on the Space Shuttle, as well as the Canadarm2 and the rest of the Mobile Servicing System on the International Space Station. The Canadarm and Canadarm2 employ the Advanced Space Vision System which allows more efficient use of the robotic arms. Another Canadian technology of note is the Orbiter Boom Sensor System, which is an extension of the Canadarm used to inspect the Space Shuttle's thermal protection system for damage while in orbit.[citation needed]

Canadian astronauts[edit]

There have been three recruiting campaigns for astronauts for the CSA. The first, in 1983, led to the selection of Roberta Bondar, Marc Garneau, Robert Thirsk, Ken Money, Bjarni Tryggvason and Steve MacLean. The second, in 1992, selected Chris Hadfield, Julie Payette, Dafydd Williams and Michael McKay. On May 13, 2009, it was announced after the completion of a third selection process that two new astronauts, Jeremy Hansen and David Saint-Jacques, had been chosen.[16]

Nine Canadians have participated in 17 manned mission in total: 14 NASA Space Shuttle missions (including one mission to Mir) and 3 Roscosmos Soyuz missions.

Two former Canadian astronauts never flew in space; Michael McKay resigned due to medical reasons and Ken Money resigned in 1992, eight years after his selection.

Name Launch
Vehicle
Mission Launch date Notes
Marc Garneau Challenger STS-41-G October 5, 1984 First Canadian in space
Roberta Bondar Discovery STS-42 January 22, 1992 First Canadian woman in space
Steven MacLean Columbia STS-52 October 22, 1992
Chris Hadfield Atlantis STS-74 November 12, 1995 Only Canadian to visit Mir
Marc Garneau Endeavour STS-77 May 19, 1996 First Canadian to return to space
Robert Thirsk Columbia STS-78 June 20, 1996
Bjarni Tryggvason Discovery STS-85 August 7, 1997
Dafydd Williams Columbia STS-90 April 17, 1998
Julie Payette Discovery STS-96 May 27, 1999 First Canadian to visit the International Space Station
Marc Garneau Endeavour STS-97 November 30, 2000 ISS mission. Return to space (third visit)
Chris Hadfield Endeavour STS-100 April 19, 2001 ISS mission. Return to space (second visit). First spacewalk by a Canadian
Steven MacLean Atlantis STS-115 September 9, 2006 ISS mission. Return to space (second visit); spacewalk
Dafydd Williams Endeavour STS-118 August 27, 2007 ISS mission. Return to space (second visit); spacewalk
Robert Thirsk Soyuz-FG Soyuz TMA-15 May 27, 2009 ISS Expedition 20 and Expedition 21. Return to space (second visit). First flight on a Russian launch vehicle by a Canadian. First Canadian on a permanent ISS crew. First time two Canadians were in space simultaneously (with Payette)
Julie Payette Endeavour STS-127 July 15, 2009 ISS mission. First Canadian woman to return to space. First time two Canadians were in space simultaneously (with Thirsk). Largest gathering of humans (13) in space, as seven STS-127 arrivals join 6 already on ISS. Largest gathering (5) of nationalities in space, as USA, Russia, Japan, Canada, and Belgium have astronauts together on ISS. Last Canadian to fly on a US Space Shuttle.
Guy Laliberté Soyuz-FG Soyuz TMA-16, Soyuz TMA-14 September 30, 2009 First Canadian space tourist, visited ISS and returned aboard TMA-14.
Chris Hadfield Soyuz-FG Soyuz TMA-07M December 19, 2012 ISS Expedition 34 and Expedition 35. Return to space (third visit). First Canadian commander of a spacecraft, first Canadian Commander of a permanent ISS crew.
David Saint-Jacques Soyuz-FG Soyuz MS-11 November 2018 ISS Expedition 58 and Expedition 59.

On December 19, 2012, Canadian astronaut Chris Hadfield launched aboard a Soyuz spacecraft to reach the International Space Station. This mission marked the completion of NASA's compensation to Canada for its contribution to the Shuttle and International Space Station programs, meaning that there were no confirmed remaining space flight opportunities for Canadian astronauts.[17] In June 2015, the Canadian government announced a renewed commitment to the International Space Station, securing flights for both of Canada's remaining active astronauts.[18] In May 2016, the CSA announced that David Saint-Jacques would fly to the International Space Station aboard a Roscosmos Soyuz rocket in November 2018 for 6 months, as part of the Expedition 58/59 crew.[19]

Canadian satellites[edit]

The Alouette 1 was the first satellite built by a country other than the United States or Soviet Union.
Name Launched Retired Purpose
Alouette 1 September 29, 1962 1972 Ionosphere research
Alouette 2 November 29, 1965 August 1, 1975 Ionosphere research
ISIS 1 January 30, 1969 1990 Ionosphere research
ISIS 2 April 1, 1971 1990 Ionosphere research
Hermes January 17, 1976 November, 1979 Experimental communications satellite
RADARSAT-1 November 4, 1995 March 29, 2013 Commercial Earth observation satellite[20]
MOST June 30, 2003 In service Space telescope
SCISAT-1 August 12, 2003 In service Earth observation satellite (atmosphere)
RADARSAT-2 December 14, 2007 In service Commercial Earth observation satellite
NEOSSat February 25, 2013 In service Monitoring of near-Earth objects[21]
Sapphire February 25, 2013 In service Military space surveillance[21][22]
BRITE February 25, 2013 In service Space telescope[21][23]
CASSIOPE September 29, 2013 In service Ionosphere research, experimental telecommunications[24][25]
M3MSat June 22, 2016 In service Communications satellite[26]
RADARSAT Constellation 2018 Planned Commercial Earth observation satellite

Additionally, there are commercial satellites launched by the telecommunications company Telesat, a former Crown corporation that was privatized in 1998. These are the Anik satellites, the Nimiq satellites (all currently used by Bell TV), and MSAT-1. Further, technology and research satellites have been developed by UTIAS-SFL,[27] including the CanX program, ExactView-9, and GHGSat-D.

International projects[edit]

The CSA contributes to many international projects including satellites, rovers, and space telescopes. The CSA has contributed components to ESA, NASA, ISRO, JAXA, and SNSB projects in the past.[28] Currently, Canada is contributing the Fine Guidance Sensor to NASA's upcoming James Webb Space Telescope.[29]

Name Country Primary Agency Launch Date Canadian contribution Notes
FUSE USA NASA 1999 Fine Error Sensor COM DEV
Terra USA NASA 1999 MOPITT (Measurements of Pollution in The Troposphere) PI: Jim Drummond; COM DEV
Odin Sweden SNSB 2001 OSIRIS (Optical Spectroscopic and Infrared Remote Imaging System) PI: Doug Degenstein, University of Saskatchewan; Routes
Envisat Europe ESA 2002 ESA collaboration
CloudSat USA NASA 2006 Radar components COM DEV
THEMIS USA NASA 2007 Automated ground observatories
Phoenix USA NASA 2007 Meteorological station First Canadian component on Mars; confirmed snow on Mars
Herschel Europe ESA 2009 HIFI Local Oscillator Source Unit COM DEV
Planck Europe ESA 2009 ESA collaboration PI: J. Richard Bond, University of Toronto and Douglas Scott, University of British Columbia
Proba-2 Europe ESA 2009 Fiber Sensor Demonstrator MPB Communications Inc.
SMOS Europe ESA 2009 ESA collaboration
Curiosity USA NASA 2011 APXS instrument
Swarm Europe ESA 2013 Electric Field Instrument (EFI) COM DEV
Astrosat India ISRO 2015 Precision detectors for the twin UV and visible imaging telescopes (UVIT) PI: John Hutchings
Astro-H Japan JAXA 2016 Hard X-ray Telescope Contact lost March 26, 2016
OSIRIS-REx USA NASA 2016 (planned) OSIRIS-REx Laser Altimeter (OLA) First Canadian component on a sample return mission
JWST USA NASA 2018 (planned) Fine Guidance Sensor/Near Infrared Imager and Slitless Spectrograph (FGS/NIRISS) PI: John Hutchings, Herzberg Institute of Astrophysics

Additionally, Canadian universities and aerospace contractors, including the University of Calgary,[30][31] UTIAS-SFL, COM DEV, MDA, Magellan Aerospace, Telesat and others, have provided components to various international space agencies.

Facilities[edit]

A number of launch facilities have been used by the Canadian Space Agency and its predecessors:

Future programs[edit]

With the successful launching of Radarsat-2 in December 2007 and completion of Canada's C$1.4 billion contribution to the International Space Station in early 2008, the CSA found itself with no major follow-on projects. This fact was highlighted by Marc Garneau, Canada's first astronaut and former head of the CSA who in the fall of 2007 called upon the Canadian government to develop and institute a space policy for Canada.

A modest step has been taken to resolve this problem. In November 2008, the Agency signed a $40 million 16-month contract with MacDonald, Dettwiler and Associates of Vancouver to begin the design of the RADARSAT Constellation (3 satellite) earth observation mission.[32] In August 2010 further funding was awarded for detailed design work scheduled for completion by 2012. Launch of the three satellites is scheduled for 2018. Also in the 2009 Federal budget, the agency was awarded funding for the preliminary design of robotic Lunar/Martian rovers.[33]

However, a number of initiatives are without funding. The CSA is the lead agency for the Polar Communication and Weather mission (PCW) which involves the planned launch of two satellites in polar orbit to provide Canadian authorities with improved weather information and communications capabilities in the high arctic.[34] Launch of the two satellites is proposed to take place in 2016. Funding for further development of the mission has yet to be approved.[35]

Rockets[edit]

A Canadian Black Brant XII launching from Wallops Flight Facility

The Canadian Space Agency has no indigenous launch system capability beyond upper atmospheric sounding rockets.[32][36] Canada relies on other countries, such as the U.S., India and Russia, to launch its spacecraft into orbit, but both the Defence Department and the space agency are looking at the option of constructing a Canadian-made launcher.[36][37]

The CSA has been researching locations in Cape Breton, Nova Scotia, and Fort Churchill, Manitoba, for a possible micro satellites (150 kg) launch site for the CSA,[37] and end its reliance on foreign launch providers. However, Canadian politicians seldom change funding without having at least some idea of the expected economic, social and national defense benefits that could reasonably accrue to their constituents from the program. Another possible location, Canadian Forces Base Suffield, remains an option. [32][38] According to Canadian Space Agency officials, it would take 10 to 12 years for a full-scale project to design and build a small satellite launcher.[32] There is no funding for these activities yet.[39]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d "Canadian Space Agency 2015–16 Report on Plans and Priorities". 2015. 
  2. ^ "PM announces changes in the senior ranks of the Public Service". Retrieved March 3, 2015. 
  3. ^ Andrew B. Godefroy. Defence & Discovery: Canada's Military Space Program, 1945–1974. Vancouver: University of British Columbia Press, 2011. ISBN 978-0-7748-1959-6 http://www.ubcpress.ubc.ca/search/title_book.asp?BookID=299173226
  4. ^ Andrew B. Godefroy. Defence & Discovery: Canada's Military Space Program, 1945–1974. Vancouver: University of British Columbia Press, 2011. ISBN 978-0-7748-1959-6, chapters 2–6.
  5. ^ "Canadian Space Agency Act". Department of Justice. Retrieved 2011-05-29. 
  6. ^ "(John) Larkin Kerwin". Science.ca. GCS Research Society. Retrieved 2011-05-29. 
  7. ^ Canadian Space Milestones - Canadian Space Agency. Asc-csa.gc.ca. Retrieved on 2013-08-21.
  8. ^ "William MacDonald Evans Receives Canadian Space Award". Marketwire. Retrieved 2016-02-01. 
  9. ^ [1] History of the Canadian Astronaut Corps. Retrieved on 2014-05-04
  10. ^ Black, Chuck. "The Commercial Space Blog". Retrieved 2016-02-01. 
  11. ^ Steve MacLean annonce son départ de l'Agence spatiale canadienne - Agence spatiale canadienne. Asc-csa.gc.ca (2013-01-15). Retrieved on 2013-08-21.
  12. ^ "Luc Brûlé, Interim President, Canadian Space Agency". 
  13. ^ "PM announces a change in the senior ranks of the Public Service". 
  14. ^ a b c Dotto, Lydia (May 2002). Canada and The European Space Agency: Three Decades of Cooperation (PDF). European Space Agency. 
  15. ^ a b c "ESA and Canada renew partnership in space science and technology". European Space Agency. 15 December 2010. Retrieved 2014-02-02. 
  16. ^ "History of the Canadian Astronaut Corps". Canadian Space Agency. Retrieved 2011-05-29. 
  17. ^ Black, Chuck (December 29, 2010). "This Week in Space for Canada". Space Ref Canada. Retrieved 2011-05-29. 
  18. ^ "Canada's newest astronauts will fly to space by 2024". CBC.ca. Canadian Broadcasting Corporation. June 2, 2015. Retrieved 15 September 2015. 
  19. ^ "Canadian Astronaut David Saint-Jacques - Mission". 
  20. ^ "RADARSAT-1: Seventeen Years of Technological Success" (Press release). Canadian Space Agency. 9 May 2013. Retrieved 2013-05-30. 
  21. ^ a b c Indian rocket launches asteroid hunter, 6 other satellites - NBC News.com. Science.nbcnews.com (2013-02-25). Retrieved on 2013-08-21.
  22. ^ SSTL's 40th satellite platform launch: Sapphire reaches orbit. Spacedaily.com. Retrieved on 2013-08-21.
  23. ^ Canada Stays at the Forefront of Space Telescope Technology with the Launch of New Surveillance Satellite - Canadian Space Agency. Asc-csa.gc.ca (2013-02-25). Retrieved on 2013-08-21.
  24. ^ Foust, Jeff (2013-03-27). "After Dragon, SpaceX's focus returns to Falcon". NewSpace Journal. Retrieved 2013-04-05. 
  25. ^ Graham, Will. "SpaceX successfully launches debut Falcon 9 v1.1". NASASpaceFlight. Retrieved 29 September 2013. 
  26. ^ "M3MSat CSA Satellite Page". 
  27. ^ "University of Toronto Institute for Aerospace Studies - Space Flight Laboratory". Retrieved 23 April 2016. 
  28. ^ "List of CSA Satellites". Retrieved 23 April 2016. 
  29. ^ "CSA Fine Guidance Sensor/James Webb Space Telescope Information". Retrieved 23 April 2016. 
  30. ^ "University of Calgary Auroral Imaging Group". Retrieved 27 April 2016. 
  31. ^ "UCalgary Space Plasma Research". Retrieved 27 April 2016. 
  32. ^ a b c d Boucher, Marc (4 January 2011). "Is Canadian Sovereignty at Risk by a Lack of an Indigenous Satellite Launch Capability?". Space Ref Canada. Retrieved 2014-02-04. 
  33. ^ "2009 Canadian Federal Budget". Government of Canada. 2009-01-27. Retrieved 2012-09-14. 
  34. ^ "Polar Communication and Weather mission (PCW)". Canadian Space Agency. 2009-11-25. Retrieved 2011-05-29. 
  35. ^ Garand, Louis; Trishchenko, Alexander P. (July 9, 2010). "Polar Communications & Weather (PCW) Mission" (PDF). THORPEX DAOS Working Group. Environment Canada. Retrieved 2011-05-29. 
  36. ^ a b Boucher, Marc (14 December 2009). "A Rocket to Call Our Own? Canadian Space Agency Explores the Business Case". Space Ref Canada. Retrieved 2014-02-04. 
  37. ^ a b "Space Agency, DND Seek to Launch Rockets for Canada". University of Toronto. 3 January 2011. Retrieved 2014-02-04. 
  38. ^ Black, Chuck. "Advocating DND & CSA Rockets". The Commercial Space Blog. Retrieved 2014-02-04. 
  39. ^ "Space agency eyes Cape Breton for satellite launch". CTV News. Canadian Press. March 28, 2010. Retrieved 2011-05-29. 

External links[edit]

Media related to Canadian Space Agency at Wikimedia Commons