[Satellite TODAY 08-23-12] The Canadian Defense Department is planning a new $1 billion Arctic surveillance satellite network as a follow-on program to its previously announced Radarsat Constellation Mission (RCM), Canadian officials announced Aug. 23.
Funding for the Arctic surveillance network will start in 2016 and 2017.
Canadian satellite manufacturer MDA is building the three-satellite RCM system, which is also designed to provide surveillance over the Arctic. While the first of those three spacecraft was scheduled for launch in 2014, official defense documents obtained by the Ottawa Citizen said that uncertainties have developed for the project due to Canadian federal budget cuts.
The documents also identified another Canadian Arctic space program, the Polar Communications and Weather Satellite, as potentially derailed by budget cuts at the Canadian Space Agency.