April 18, 2001 – A new Space Communications research program was launched
today by the Canadian Space Agency (CSA) and the Canadian Institute for
Telecommunications Research (CITR) with the announcement of grants to
Canadian university researchers totalling $1 million.

The first group of university projects to be sponsored through the CSA-CITR
Research Program has been selected following a request for proposals and
review process administered by the Canadian Institute for Telecommunications

These successful projects, funded for a total of $1 million, of which the
Canadian Space Agency has contributed $790,000, include industrial leveraged
funds, and involve thirteen researchers from seven Canadian universities and
the federal Communications Research Centre. Universities involved include
Carleton University, Concordia University, McGill University, Queen’s
University, University of Alberta, University of Toronto and University of

The announcement today is made possible through a $1.9 million five-year
agreement between the Canadian Space Agency and the Canadian Institute for
Telecommunications Research to establish a new program supporting Canadian
leadership in the research and development of emerging space communications
systems and technologies.

The program’s areas of interest are optical and radio-frequency (RF)
technologies, antenna technologies, digital signal processing (DSP)
technologies and high speed data communications and storage technologies.
Applications are focused on payload technologies for multimedia products and
services, mobile and personal communications services and inter-satellite
“The unique synergy created through this partnership of universities and the
private sector,” said the Honourable Brian Tobin, Minister of Industry and
Minister responsible for the Canadian Space Agency, “is evidence of the
commitment of the Government of Canada to drive innovative research¾
building Canadian knowledge and expertise to develop beyond state-of-the-art
technologies and applications, strengthening Canada’s leadership in the
highly competitive global satellite communications market.”

“This new program, that will be driving Canadian space communications
research over three years, gives us the opportunity to orchestrate the close
cooperation between industry and academia, and among universities,” said
Birendra Prasada, President of CITR. “This is essential if university
researchers are to focus on the truly important technological issues in
satellite communications. It builds on the work we are doing in this field
and opens up new possibilities for the satellite research community in this
country,” said Mr. Prasada.

Funding for this project was provided for in the February 2000 budget and is
therefore built into the existing financial framework.

About the Canadian Institute for Telecommunications Research

CITR is a federally incorporated non-profit research company and a member of
the federal government’s Networks of Centres of Excellence (NCE) Program.
Its mission is to enhance the competitiveness of the Canadian information
and communications technology (ICT) sector by increasing the flow of highly
qualified people and ideas to its R&D activities.
Nearly 300 researchers and support staff are engaged in CITR’s research
networks, which span 18 universities and two federal government
laboratories. CITR’s work is funded jointly by the NCE Program and by the
Institute’s 17 industrial affiliates, which include most of Canada’s leading
ICT companies.

About the Canadian Space Agency

Established in 1989 with its headquarters situated in Saint-Hubert, Quebec,
the Canadian Space Agency coordinates all aspects of the Canadian Space
Program. Through its Space Knowledge, Applications and Industry Development
business line, the CSA delivers services involving: Earth and the
Environment; Space Science; Human Presence in Space; Satellite
Communications; Generic Space Technologies; and, Space Qualification
Services and Awareness. The Canadian Space Agency is at the forefront of the
development and application of space knowledge for the benefit of Canadians
and humanity.

For more information:

Backgrounder and contract awards:


For information:
Nicholas A. Ignatieff
Director, Administration
& Partnership Development
Canadian Institute for
Telecommunications Research
(514) 398-8104

André Leclair
Senior Media Relations
Canadian Space Agency
(450) 926-4370