Canadian Space Agency

Canadian Space Agency

Infobox Government agency
agency_name = Canadian Space Agency
nativename = l'Agence spatiale canadienne
nativename_a =
nativename_r =

logo_width = 230px
logo_caption =

seal_width = 150px
seal_caption =
formed = December 14, 1989
jurisdiction = Government of Canada
headquarters = John H. Chapman Space Centre
employees = 575
budget = CAD $373.5 million (2007)
minister1_name = Jim Prentice
minister1_pfo = Minister of Industry
chief1_name = Steve MacLean [ [ Astronaut Steve MacLean named Space Agency chief] ]
chief1_position = President
website =
footnotes =

The Canadian Space Agency (CSA or, in French, l'Agence spatiale canadienne, ASC) is the Canadian government space agency responsible for Canada's space program. It was established in March 1989 by the Canadian Space Agency Act and sanctioned in December 1990. The Chief Executive Officer of the agency is the President who reports to the Minister of Industry.

The headquarters of the CSA is located at John H. Chapman Space Centre in Saint-Hubert, Quebec. The agency also has offices in Ottawa, Ontario at the David Florida Laboratory (which is mainly an engineering installation) and small liaison offices in Washington, D.C.; Paris, France; Cape Canaveral, Florida; and Houston, Texas.

The agency is a relatively modest federal establishment, with only 575 employees and a rotating student population of about 100 interns or summer workers. Most of the staff is at the Chapman Centre.

In December 2007 Minister Jim Prentice appointed Guy Bujold as the president of the Canadian Space Agency.

Steve MacLean was named as president on September 2, 2008.


With the launch of Alouette 1 in 1962 Canada became the third country to put a man-made satellite into space. The mission was successful beyond expectations, for although it was scheduled to proceed for one year, it in fact lasted for ten. This prompted further study of the ionosphere with the international ISIS program, which in 1993 was designated an International Milestone of Electrical Engineering by IEEE. It should be noted, however, that Canada has never had any domestic launch capabilities of its own. While Alouette 1 was entirely built and funded by Canada, it was launched by the American National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) from Vandenberg AFB in California.

Another Canadian first was the launch of Anik A-1 in 1972, making Canada the first country in the world to have its own domestic geostationary communication satellite network.

Mission and mandate

The Canadian Space Agency Act is the Act of the Parliament of Canada which established the Canadian Space Agency. The Act received royal assent on May 10 1990 and came into force on December 14 1990. [Canadian Space Agency Act. Retrieved from]

The legislated mandate of the CSA 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.

To achieve this, the CSA attempts to promote an environment where all levels of the organization:
*pursue excellence collectively
*advocate a client-oriented attitude
*support employee-oriented practices and open communications
*commit themselves to both empowerment and accountability
*pledge to cooperate and work with partners to mutual benefit

Cooperation with other national agencies

The CSA has several formal and informal partnerships and collaborative programs or agreements with space agencies in other countries, such as NASA, ESA and JAXA, ISRO.

Since January 1, 1979 Canada has had the special status of a cooperating state with the ESA, paying for the privilege and also investing in working time and providing scientific instruments which are placed on European probes. On June 21, 2000 the accord was renewed for a fourth period, this time for 10 years. 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 CSA visited the China National Space Administration in October 2005 and planned to reach a deal soon to put Canadian scientific instruments in two Chinese satellites. There was also speculation about China in the future perhaps wanting the Canadarm2 technology for its planned space station, but as of [ 22 October 2005] , the CNSA has not raised the possibility.

Canadian Space Program

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

Astronaut Steven MacLean is Chief Astronaut of CSA.

In addition to its astronauts, some of the most notable Canadian technological contributions to space exploration are 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 are assisted by the Advanced Space Vision System which allows more efficient use of the robotic arms. Another example 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.

With the successful launching of Radarsat 2 in December 2007 and near completion of Canada's C$1.4 billion contribution to the ISS the agency in early 2008 finds itself with no major follow on projects. This fact has been 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.

Canadians in space

Eight Canadians have participated in 13 NASA manned missions:

Note: Michael McKay resigned due to medical reasons and Kenneth Money resigned in 1992, eight years after his selection; neither flew in space.

Canadian satellites

Additionally, there are some commercial satellites launched by the telecommunications company Telesat Canada. These are the 13 Anik satellites (3 of which are still in use), the 3 Nimiq satellites (all currently used by Bell TV), and a satellite called M-Sat 1 launched April 20, 1996, at 22h36 UTC.

Further, technology/research satellites have been launched by the University of Toronto, including the CanX series.

pace Agency Locations

*John H. Chapman Space Centre - Longueuil, Quebec
*David Florida Laboratory - Ottawa, Ontario
*Fort Churchill - Manitoba

ee also

* List of space agencies
* Timeline of space travel by nationality
* Canadian government scientific research organizations
* Canadian university scientific research organizations
* Canadian industrial research and development organizations
* Canadian Geospace Monitoring
* Science and technology in Canada


External links

* [ Official website]
* [ Canada in Space]
* [ Text of the Canadian Space Agency Act]

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