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RADARSAT-1 Celebrates Ninth Birthday

By | November 8, 2004

      RADARSAT-1, a Canadian Earth observation satellite, is completing its ninth year of operation, and it is close to doubling its five-year design life.

      The spacecraft has delivered precision images and garnered 15 percent of the world’s Earth observation market for Canada. Canadian Space Agency satellite engineers continue to find ways to extend the life of the world first commercial microwave radar satellite.

      RADARSAT-1 delivers images with accuracy to clients in Canada and around theworld, said Marc Garneau, president of the Canadian Space Agency. RADARSAT-1 captures images day and night, and in all weather conditions. As Canada’s sentinel, it is an integral part of coastal surveillance and maritime pollution patrol, supporting the Canadian Coast Guard and Fisheries, and Oceans Canada in the protection of navigable waters. The spacecraft also aids the International Charter on Space and Major Disasters that includes the European Space Agency, the French space agency, NOAA (U.S.A.), and the Indian Space Research Organization.

      Canada’s next-generation Earth-observation satellite will be the RADARSAT-2, a product of a public-private sector partnership. The Canadian Space Agency and MacDonald, Dettwiler and Associates are working together on the construction of RADARSAT-2, scheduled for launch in 2005. (Carole Duval, Canadian Space Agency, 450/926-4370)

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