Five Space Projects Illustrated by Canadian Artists

As part of their collaboration for the 2018 edition of Science Literacy Week, the Canadian Space Agency (CSA) and the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC) joined forces with Microfiches to create a series of five posters about space projects. The texts were written by the Canadian Space Agency and visually interpreted by Canadian artists.

You can download and print these posters for free to decorate your class, your office, your library or your bedroom! Simply make sure to respect the material's Creative Commons license.

Dextre and Canadian space robotics

Dextre is the most sophisticated space robot ever built. It has a sense of touch similar to our own and is able to repair itself. Canadarm2, the Canadian robotic arm, along with Dextre, Canada's multitalented robotic space handyman, and the Mobile Base System, a moveable work platform and storage location, are Canada's contribution to the International Space Station.

Illustration: Raymond Biesinger.
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Radar satellites and the RADARSAT constellation mission

When a radar antenna mounted on an Earth-orbiting satellite sends a beam of radio waves toward Earth, the waves pass through its cloud cover and strike its surface. Some of the waves rebound from Earth's surface, while others scatter. The ones that bounce back to the radar carry with them an imprint of the surface. Canada is a world leader in using radar satellites to observe Earth. The Canadian RADARSAT Constellation is composed of three identical radar satellites, and will provide daily revisits of Canada and the Arctic up to four times every day.

Illustration: Sophie Guerrive.
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The Wayfinding study and science on board the International Space Station

The Canadian Wayfinding study examines astronauts' brain activity to shed more light on the structural and functional changes the brain undergoes in a weightless environment. This research will improve our understanding of medical disorders, such as Ménière's disease, that impair movement, posture and spatial orientation. The Canadian studies conducted on board the International Space Station thus help improve quality of life on Earth.

Illustration: Charles-Étienne Brochu.
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CubeSats and the Canadian CubeSats Project

CubeSats are revolutionary. These miniature, cube-shaped satellites, which weigh about 1 kg and are about the same size as a Rubik's cube, have greatly facilitated research and development activities in space. The Canadian CubeSat Project gives teams of professors and students from post-secondary institutions the opportunity to participate in a real space mission from start to finish.

Asteroid Bennu and the OSIRIS-REx mission

The asteroid Bennu is nearly 500 metres in diameter and circles the Sun once every 436 Earth days. Composed of residual pebbles and stones from the formation of planets, the asteroid Bennu has remained mostly unchanged for 4.6 billion years, which makes it a good subject to study to understand the evolution of the solar system. The Canadian Space Agency is collaborating with NASA on the OSIRIS-REx mission to bring a sample of the asteroid back to Earth.

Illustration: Diane Obomsawin.
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