Oct 18 (Reuters) – Canada said on Wednesday it will invest C$1.01 billion ($740.90 million) in satellite technology over the next 15 years to improve the Earth observation data it uses to track forest fires and other environmental crises.
The new initiative, called Radarsat+, will collect information about the Earth’s oceans, land, climate and populated areas, said a statement from the Canadian Space Agency (CSA).
Data collected through Earth observation technologies allows scientists to see how the planet is changing and make decisions to address emergencies like wildfires or longer-term problems like climate change.
Canada has previously launched three satellite missions under the Radarsat program – Radarsat-1, Radarsat-2 and the Radarsat Constellation Mission (RCM).
Radarsat-1 has been out of service since 2013, while the other two satellites are operated by space companies MDA (MDA.TO) and CSA.
The investment will also help develop a replacement for RCM, CSA said. RCM consists of three smaller, more powerful satellites that provide daily coverage of Canada’s coasts.
($1 = 1.3632 Canadian dollars)
Reporting by Juby Babu in Bengaluru; Editing by Tasim Zahid
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