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Canadian Space Agency Funds Earth Observation Tech at MDA

By | November 30, 2020
Illustration of the Radarsat 2 satellite. Photo: MDA.

Illustration of MDA’s RADARSAT-2 satellite. Photo: MDA

The Canadian Space Agency (CSA) contributed funding to MDA Space under the smartEarth initiative to develop next-generation Earth Observation (EO) technologies, the company revealed Monday. The monetary value of the contribution was not disclosed.

The smartEarth initiative has funded the Deep Learning for Classification of SAR-Derived Forest Change project, which aims to develop new Artificial Intelligence (AI) algorithms to process space-based radar data. The initiative has also funded the Detecting Object Behaviour of Interest Using Deep Learning project, which forms the basis for a new analytics engine within next-generation ground systems.

Within the past few months, CSA has contributed additional funding to MDA under its Space Technology Development Program (STDP), including five research and development projects and two feasibility studies. These contributions involve the areas of robotics, vision systems and sensors, and satcom technologies.

“These funding awards are exciting news for our team at MDA, and will help us advance the development of leading-edge technologies in areas where we see opportunities to grow our business, including space robotics and sensors, geointelligence and digital communications,” said MDA CEO Mike Greenley. “We value our decades-long partnership with the CSA and its continued commitment to help Canadian companies grow and prosper in the global space sector.”