Language selection


Top of page

Canada's Strategy for Satellite Earth Observation

Satellite EO value chain – An end-to-end-system

Secure & source

  • Design and build Canadian satellites to secure the data we need
  • Develop sensors to place onboard international partners' satellite missions
  • Source commercial and international data

Did you know?

Canada has a reputation for designing and building satellites that last much longer than expected. For example, RADARSAT-2, which was launched in and expected to operate until 2014, is still operating in . Today it is orbiting 800 kilometres above the surface of Earth, providing world-class data and reinforcing the economic value of investments in Canadian science, technology, engineering, and mathematics.

Collect & process

  • Download data from satellites to ground stations
  • Gather open government data from trusted partners
  • Pre-process and archive data so it is discoverable and accessible

Did you know?

Satellite EO data is big data, very big data. Canada's reception stations download 1.8 terabytes of data daily from the RADARSAT Constellation Mission (RCM) alone. That's the equivalent of uploading 1.2 million pictures from your cell phone to social media every day.

Enable access

  • Design and implement shared infrastructure for seamless and remote data access
  • Structure large volumes of data so it is analysis-ready
  • Release data through easy-to-use portals

Did you know?

Canada's supercomputing capabilities have come a long way. The GC's modern high-performance computers are 70 million times faster at processing information than the first government supercomputers from the mid-1970s.

Combine & transform

  • Combine satellite EO data with other types of data, including ground observations and socio-economic data
  • Develop algorithms and advanced analytic tools to gain new insights from the data
  • Harness new insights to build applications and improve existing services

Did you know?

To create Canada's national weather forecast, 14 million different satellite data points are processed through supercomputers every day. These inputs pay off, as the GC's Weather Service receives over 50 million visits per month from Canadians.

Get more from our data

  • Coordinate data use in government and facilitate uptake among users in industry and academia
  • Develop a highly skilled and inclusive workforce for the future
  • Work with users to identify new and ongoing data needs to inform new requirements

Did you know?

A recent review of Canada's academic sector identified that geospatial research using satellite data was by far the largest, and fastest growing, field of space-related research in the country.

Printable version (PDF, 2.04 MB)

Date modified: