Press Release

Telesat Canada and partners join forces with the Canadian Space Agency to expand access to new multimedia services

By SpaceRef Editor
April 14, 2000
Filed under

OTTAWA, April 14, 2000 – John Manley, Minister of Industry and Minister
responsible for the Canadian Space Agency, today announced a
public-private sector partnership to develop and launch a specialized, multimedia,
communications satellite payload.

The Canadian Space Agency, in collaboration with Telesat Canada of
Gloucester, Ontario, and its partners, COM DEV International Limited of
Cambridge, Ont. and EMS Technologies of Ste. Anne de Bellevue, Que.,
selected on the basis of a competitive process, will develop, deploy
and operate an innovative Ka band high-speed, multimedia communications
payload. The multi-media payload, a key part of the $600 million ANIK F2
satellite, to be launched in 2002, will commercialize the use of the Ka band. This
payload offers the promise to deliver cheaper, faster and more highly
effective communications services and expand access to tele-medicine,
tele-learning, tele-working, e-commerce, high-speed Internet and
government services to citizens living in urban, rural and remote communities
throughout Canada.

“For three decades, Canada has continued to lead the world in the
development and use of satellite technology to bring state-of-the-art
communications services to urban centres, as well as remote communities
throughout the country,” said Minister Manley. “Now, in addition to
bringing Canadians exciting new multimedia services, we are enhancing the
nation’s competitiveness through our continuing support for leading-edge
research and development.”

The agreement announced today includes an $80 million investment from
the Canadian Space Agency and an additional $29 million contribution by
Canadian industry bringing the total value of the project to $109 million. Com
Dev International Ltd and EMS Technologies will receive a total of $20M in
non-repayable contributions to undertake research and development. In
exchange for its portion of the investment, Telesat Canada will provide
the Government of Canada with an equivalent value in multimedia satellite
services. These services will support important initiatives such as
tele-medicine, tele-learning and the SchoolNet.

The first satellite in North America to carry a digital on-board
processor, Telesat Canada’s Anik F2 will continue to position the Canadian
satellite industry to compete effectively in an increasingly competitive global
marketplace. Direct economic benefits from the Anik F2 Ka band
multimedia satellite services are projected at over $1 billion with an additional
$550 million to be generated in the initial seven years from spin-off
opportunities resulting from the export of payload technologies and

Funding for the agreement announced today is provided under the
Canadian Space Program which is administered by the Canadian Space Agency. The
Agreement will be jointly managed by the Canadian Space Agency, and the
Communications Research Centre, an agency of Industry Canada.

Note to Editors – Signing and B-roll video available for download:
Friday, April 14th – 13:55 to 14:25: Anik E1, Ku-band, Transponder 9


For more information: Caroline Lavallee
Senior Communications Officer
Public Relations and Media
Canadian Space Agency
Cellular: (514) 943-6808

About the Canadian Space Agency

Established in 1989, with its headquarters located in St Hubert,
Quebec, the Canadian Space Agency has set out to ensure that Canadians learn and
benefit from the innovations of space science and technology. Its objectives
are to support and promote a highly competitive space industry and address the
needs of Canadian society. With almost half of Canada’s GDP growth in
the knowledge-intensive sectors of the economy, the Canadian Space Program
is a key driver behind continued leadership on the world stage, new
opportunities for industry and scientists, and long-term social and economic benefits
for all Canadians.

About Telessat Canada

With over thirty years of engineering and technical experience, Telesat
Canada is the world’s most experienced commercial satellite operator.
Telesat provides telecommunications and broadcast distribution services
in the Americas and is a leading consultant, operator and partner in
satellite ventures around the globe.

About COM DEV International

With over 25 years of leadership in the communications infrastructure
industry COM DEV International Ltd. is the largest Canadian-owned
designer, manufacturer and distributor of space and ground-based wireless
products and subsystems. COM DEV International Ltd. designs and manufactures
sophisticated wireless products for satellite payloads, a wide array of
microwave and electronic products and multimedia broadband satellite

About EMS Technologies

With a unique range of technologies developed from years of experience, EMS
Technologies, Inc. is a leading provider of wireless and satellite
communications solutions, with a growing emphasis on broadband
applications focussing on the needs of broadband and mobile-information users.

Suzanne Parent

SpaceRef staff editor.